• 31-MAR-2015

Weekly highlights N°19

11 days of racing and 24 hours to go before rounding Cape Horn. The fleet has been sailing in the Deep Blue during the last few days, with windy conditions, cold weather and unusually for this part of the world, match racing in the Furious Fifties.

Southern Ocean conditions duly arrived for the Volvo Ocean Race fleet and some of the sailors experienced scary moments on board.Life on board became quite uncomfortable. The crews had to deal with cold weather and temperatures lower than 5 degrees. This and the big waves meant more people were needed on deck to get the best performance from the boats.

Race Control moved the Ice Limit further north; a safety decision to avoid possible icebergs in the fleet's path.Leg 5 is the toughest and longest leg of the Volvo Ocean Race, and brings the fleet to Point Nemo, the furthest land point in the middle of the ocean, where the closest human contact is at the International Space Station.

The fleet has been sailing close to the ice limit in a weather transition that has also seen the boats compress. We have seen 'in-shore' type racing and gybing duels in the middle of the Southern Ocean, with only 10 miles between the first five boats.

The crews have been locked in an intense battle over the past 24 hours, jostling for position as they seek to gain even the smallest advantage over their rivals. As a result of this close-quarter racing, the lead has changed hands several times.

Next up is the milestone that all sailors want to achieve, the rounding of Cape Horn. The ETA is Monday, 30 March, but before that the fleet expect to have deal with more strong winds and wild conditions.


  • Marie Laurens
    Volvo Ocean Race News Distribution Manager