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Selden 2020 - LEADERBOARD

Team Childhood I departs Alicante for third and final offshore leg of The Ocean Race Europe

by Team Childhood I 13 Jun 12:39 PDT 13 June 2021
Start of the Third Leg of The Ocean Race Europe, from Alicante, Spain, to Genoa, Italy. © Sailing Energy / The Ocean Race

Sunday the conditions were ideal for the start of Leg 3. The third and final offshore leg of The Ocean Race Europe got under way in Alicante, Spain, and set off into the Mediterranean bound for Genova, Italy.

In contrast to the predominantly breezy conditions, the crews experienced on the first two legs the weather forecast for leg three calls for light winds throughout the 600 nm passage to Genova. The fleet is expected to arrive in Genova on Thursday. Where the fleet awaits the final coastal race in Genova on Saturday, June 19.

About four hours after the start of Leg 3 skipper Simeon Tienpont said the following from onboard Team Childhood I. Tienpont: "We had a good start leaving Alicante, Spain. Round the Isle of Tabarca Wouter, our navigator got the latest weather report. Based on that the northerly and easterly routing is more or less the same. My preference is to make first as many miles as possible towards Genova, especially now we still have wind. The northerly option looks most favorable at the moment. Next to that, I want to stay close to the fleet. Over the previous two legs, we saw that the differences between the teams are small. In the end, it's almost match racing. Only Sailing Poland and The Austrian Ocean Racing Team went east straight away over starboard."

Tienpont continues: "We are currently sailing along the coast of Benidorm and setting course towards Palma. The tension is rising now the fleet is splitting up, onboard everyone is full of energy and happy. The atmosphere is still good, we all know that the results are not representative of the way we sailed the last two legs. Everybody is motivated to set it right in this last leg of The Ocean Race Europe."

"We are all enjoying this race and I'm proud of this crew. The learning curve of these young professionals is steep and keeps on growing. I already concluded that this Europe race is a success. Especially for this young and talented crew, the crew that has to do it themselves next year when The Ocean Race, around the world, is back.

One of the exponents of that young team is the 26-year-old Jelmer van Beek. Before the Leg started Van Beek was eager and aware of the unique position he and the team are in. Van Beek: "A few weeks ago, when we left The Hague, Gideon Messink our team director told me: don't forget to enjoy it. It will be over before you know. And damn he's right. Time flies."

"Until now we sailed well, but I've got the feeling there is more possible. All teams are still close to one another in the standings, it's still possible for us to reach the podium. It will be about a year from now before we will race again with seven or maybe eight VO65's. For me, that's an extra incentive to give it one more push."

"This next leg will be one with light winds. It will be a tough one with a lot of sail changes. Luckily enough everyone onboard got the chance to take some rest in the last couple of days. We will do everything we can and in the meantime, I will try to also enjoy it. We are doing something special, that's what we must realize ourselves. I expect it's again going to be decided in the last few miles before the finish line."

Scoreboard before the start of Leg 3:

1. Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team - 11 points
2. AkzoNobel Ocean Racing - 11 points
3. Sailing Poland - 10 points
4. The Austrian Ocean Race Project - 9 points
5. Team Childhood I - 8 points
6. AmberSail-2 - 7 points
7. Viva Mexico - 6 points

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