Volvo, Kieler Woche, America's Cup fire and more sailing news
For the teams racing in the fully crewed, around-the-world Volvo Ocean Race (VOR), only three scoring chances remain (two in-port races and one offshore leg), so the pressure is on for the front-running teams to perform.
Groupama, Telefonica, Puma Ocean Racing and Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ) are in contention for overall podium finishes, with Groupama 4 currently leading.
Longtime race leader Telefonica has all but concluded that theirs is likely a race for second-place, a fate that skipper Iker Martinez isn't particularly thrilled about. 'We never ever thought about coming second in this race,' said Martinez. 'We wanted to win it. Now that we cannot do that, to come in second or third is not too important for us. What's important for us is to finish the regatta with a good feeling, and with knowing that we've done all we could. As long as we have that, then that will be enough.'
In America's Cup news, a fire broke out in the bulkhead of San Francisco's Pier 29—home of an America's Cup construction site—on June 20, triggering a four-alarm response from local fire fighters. Fortunately, the blaze did little more than snarl traffic as the zone is being razed to make way for Cup facilities.
Also in Cup news, the fleet of AC45 wingsail-powered catamarans have taken to the waters of Rhode Island's Narragansett Bay in preparation for next week's America's Cup World Series Newport Act, which is the final event of the ACWS's 2011-2012 season. Three teams—ETNZ, Artemis and Oracle Racing Spithill—are locked in serious contention for overall season honors, so count on an entertaining regatta.
Kiteboarding made its way onto the international stage with its June 20th appearance at this year's Kiel Week, the Clipper Around the World Yacht Race fleet is bracing for a walloping, and the foil-borne l'Hydroptère DCNS has entered the Pacific Ocean by way of the Panama Canal and a freighter, en-route to LA and her eventual assault on the Transpac record.
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