• 23-FEB-2015

Weekly highlights N°15

After almost two weeks of intense sailing it's still all to play for in leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race, a 5,264 nautical mile journey from Sanya to Auckland.

After splitting into two groups early in the leg, Team Brunel took full advantage of their decision to sail further north in search of stronger winds, overtaking the fleet to take the lead. However, skipper Bouwe Bekking knew there was still a long way to go.

For the other member of the original breakaway group, Team SCA, the news was not quite as encouraging.
With a lot of key tactical decisions still to be made, including how to tackle the potentially tricky Doldrums, the chasing pack knew anything could still happen

The boats crossed the equator for the third time in the race, meaning a date with King Neptune for some of the sailors…Overall race leaders Dongfeng have had to carry out a number of repairs on this leg, including to their mast track. They slipped to last place at one point, but recovered remarkably well to move right through the field and snatch the lead from Brunel. An impressive feat, moving from last to first place in 36 hours.

As we enter the final week of leg 4, the race to Auckland is firmly on. Brunel re-captured the lead from Dongfeng quickly, but all the boats are in close proximity. With the crews pushing hard, they know the slightest mistake could prove very costly. An exciting week lies ahead.