Please select your home edition

Shifting gears: Leg 2 presents challenges to IMOCA sailors

by The Ocean Race 24 Jan 09:28 PST 25 January 2023
Skippers Press Conference in Cabo Verde: Kevin Escoffier, Holcim - PRB Team; Charlie Enright, 11th Hour Racing Team; Will Harris, Team Malizia; Paul Meilhat, Biotherm; Robert Stanjek, GUYOT environnement - Team Europe © Sailing Energy / The Ocean Race

After a week of solid trade wind action in Cabo Verde, the forecast for the start of Leg 2 is much more benign - light NE winds of 5 to 8 knots.

In fact, the weakening trade winds are likely to impact the fleet all the way down to the doldrums - the area of notorious light winds and thunder cells around the equator - making for a fascinating, if slow, start to the leg.

"First we'll have to manage the windshadow from the islands as they are so tall and the wind is light," said Robert Stanjek, the skipper of GUYOT environnement - Team Europe.

"It looks like we need to get west to be efficient for passing through the doldrums. That's the conservative option. So that's the first days."

"With the trade winds sort of breaking down, the doldrums get a bit bigger," said 11th Hour Racing Team's Simon Fisher. "It's three or four days to get down there and the trades should be rebuilding again. Getting out of here and picking up the beginning of the rebuild efficiently is quite important."

Start time for Leg 2 is 1710 local time (1810 UTC) which is about 90-minutes before sunset, so the crews will be into that first night watch nearly immediately.

But with all of the transitions involved over the first days, there are likely to be many manoeuvres and rest will be hard to find.

"The first part of the race is going to be super tactical and there will be a lot of opportunities so we'll all need to be very switched on right from the word go," said Will Harris, who will be skipper on Team Malizai for leg two.

See the leg 2 crew lists here.

Four of the five teams have made crew substitutions, with Paul Meilhat's Biotherm the only team planning to start with the same lineup.

"I think it's important for us to have the same crew because we have so many things to learn," Meilhat said. "If we change the minimum of settings, in this case that includes the people, it is easier to see the impacts and to learn."

For leg one winner Kevin Escoffier on Holcim-PRB, it is a matter of continuing to do the things that pushed his team to get the most out of the boat en route to a victory.

"We've known for a while that the boat is quite fast, or at least competitive with the other boats," Escoffier said. "The main thing is that I am really happy with the crew. For us it was the first time we were sailing offshore together. We had a lot of fun on board. It was a very good mood. At the same time we had a good result. But it was the first one. It doesn't mean anything. There is plenty still to come and we are focussing on the next one."

How to follow the start of leg two from Cabo Verde

Leg 2 of The Ocean Race is scheduled to start at 1810 UTC (1710 local time in Cabo Verde) on Wednesday afternoon and live coverage in many territories shifts to Eurosport and Discovery+.

In most of Europe and many parts of Asia, you can watch the start live on Eurosport or Eurosport 1 beginning at 1730 UTC, and live or on demand on the Eurosport Player or Discovery+.

In Germany, fans of Boris Herrmann's Team Malizia can also watch delayed coverage on ZDF (please check local listings).

In other territories the live start will be available on The Ocean Race YouTube channel. (But please note that due to coverage on Eurosport platforms, this YouTube stream will be geoblocked in Europe and Asian territories with Eurosport coverage).

In Cabo Verde and Portugal, the live start will also be available live on RTP Africa.

The Ocean Race Summit Mindelo

On Monday, The Ocean Race Summit Mindelo brought together over 300 ocean advocates in Cabo Verde, including United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres; the Prime Minister of Cabo Verde, Ulisses Correia e Silva; and Prime Minister of Portugal, António Costa, among many others --- all of them united in their ambition to redouble efforts to protect the ocean.

More information on the Summit is available here.

Related Articles

The Ocean Race Leg 2 Day 12: Making the turn
Every boat in the fleet has gybed to the east, making miles towards Cape Town It was near midnight UTC on Saturday night when boats in The Ocean Race fleet started to make their first significant move to the east towards Cape Town. Posted today at 1:24 pm
The Ocean Race Leg 2 Day 11: Around the outside
Compression and a move to the south leaves Stanjek's crew looking for answers "Around the outside" is a trope that gets pulled out at one point or another on every edition of The Ocean Race. It refers to a tactical option on the race course where a boat, or boats, sail a longer route in more favourable conditions. Posted on 4 Feb
GUYOT environnement - Team Europe Leg 2 Day 10
Will the tropical leg turn into an ice race? The unusually strong high-pressure system in the South Atlantic continues to keep the five IMOCA teams away from Cape Town/South Africa in The Ocean Race. Posted on 3 Feb
The Ocean Race Leg 2 Day 10: Differing views
There is a split in opinion that is playing out on the race course Credit to GUYOT environnement - Team Europe who have regained the lead on the race tracker as well as their position as the most southerly boat in the fleet. In a race south, that's a good thing.... or is it? Posted on 3 Feb
New World Sailing Show kicks off a huge year
Opening with a look at the start of The Ocean Race The first World Sailing Show of 2023 opens with a look at the start of The Ocean Race in Alicante, Spain, where five teams will compete in a nine-stop race around the world over the course of six months and six more will be part of the VO65 Sprint Cup. Posted on 2 Feb
GUYOT environnement - Team Europe Leg 2 Day 4
A range of strategic choices in The Ocean Race The first balancing act of the second leg of The Ocean Race enters its decisive phase on Saturday. The teams have made their decisions on how far west to sail and then jibe south to enter the Doldrums. Posted on 28 Jan
Urgent call to action to protect the ocean
Summary from the The Ocean Race Summit Mindel The Ocean Race Summit Mindelo, gathered over 300 ocean advocates in Cabo Verde, including UN SG, António Guterres; PM of Cabo Verde, Ulisses Correia e Silva; and PM of Portugal, António Costa, to discuss redoubling efforts to protect the ocean. Posted on 24 Jan
Boris Herrmann meets UN Secretary
Team Malizia is off to a good start with Sustainable Development Goals Team Malizia is off to a good start. The team embarked on The Ocean Race with two goals: to perform at their best on the water and to spread their A Race We Must Win - Climate Action Now! mission on land. Posted on 24 Jan
What have we learned from The Ocean Race Leg 1?
How the latest generation of IMOCAs stack up against each other As I outlined a fortnight ago, I was concerned about The Ocean Race, and whether - 50 years on from the first Whitbread - a fully crewed, multi-stopover round the world race in the latest cutting-edge foiling machines was relevant. Posted on 23 Jan
Team JAJO wraps up second place in VO65 class
Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team retires from leg one, leaving podium open to Austrian-Italian crew The Dutch Team JAJO earned a strong second place finish in The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint, behind Poland's WindWhisper Racing Team who had finished earlier on Saturday with an impressive VO65 class victory. Posted on 22 Jan
Vaikobi 2021 Boots - FOOTERJ Composites 2022 - J99 FOOTERLloyd Stevenson - Equilibrium 728x90px BOTTOM