Team Vestas are back and being led by the American dou Charlie Enright and Mark Towill, they have a passion and drive for sailing and sustainability and want to make a massive impact on and off the water. Their campaign this time around is being run by The Shmidt Family Foundation working to change marine health.
After the massive comeback in 2014-15 Team Vestas are back and back with more passion and drive than ever before. Led by Charlie and Mark who in the last edition of the Volvo Ocean Race got their virgin Volvo feet wet on board Alvimedica, ending their race buoyed by their victory in the final leg, adding to the two in port races they one.
This time around you can be sure of two things. Charlie and Mark are going after victory on the water and will through their trials and tribulations bring about the message of sustainability across the water.
Leg Zero Stage one saw the boats line up against some of the best boats on the water in the coveted Round the Island Race. All the boats doing well and crossing the line within 17 minutes of each other. MAPFRE taking line honours.
The Fastnet Race 2017 one of the most famous yacht races on the planet. The course along the English Channel into the Irish Sea around the monumental Fastnet Rock and back into the English Channel around Lizard and a straight run to the finish line into Plymouth Sound. This year saw winds on the nose along the english channel out into the Irish Sea and light airs on the home run with pockets of wind pushing the teams home. With Dongfeng first around the Fastnet Rock and taking line honours just pipping MAPFRE on the line by just 1 minute.
1. Dongfeng Race Team: 2 days 15 hours 38 minutes 10 seconds
2. MAPFRE: 2 days 15 hours 39 minutes 06 seconds
3. Team Brunel: 2 days 15 hours 45 minutes 47 seconds
4. team AkzoNobel: 2 days 15 hours 52 minutes 40 seconds
5. Vestas 11th Hour Racing: 2 days 16 hours 09 minutes 11 seconds
6. Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag: 2 days 16 hours 13 minutes 53 seconds
7. Turn the Tide on Plastic: 2 days 16 hours 17 minutes 32 seconds
Leg Zero Stage Three – Plymouth – St Malo
The ultimate drag race across the English Channel. MAPFRE producing a commanding performance in Stage Three seeing boat speeds hit 19 Knots at times. A very tactical race seeing MAPFRE make all the right moves taking the first spot over the line.
Cross the line times and positions.
1. MAPFRE finish time 06:29 UTC
2. Team Brunel 07:10
3. Dongfeng Race Team 07:19
4. Vestas 11th Hour Racing 07:28
5. Team AkzoNobel 07:32
6. Turn the Tide on Plastic 08:35 (unofficial)
7. Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag 09:08 (unofficial)
Leg Zero, Stage Four – St Malo – Lisbon.
With light winds shortening the final stage of leg zero. With sailing conditions down to a drifting race the decision to call time was made. A good decision with whats to come ahead for the crews. With Vestas 11th Hour Racing taking line honours for the stage with shortest distance to the finish line. Mapfre taking Leg Zero overall win.
Here are the rankings for the final stage and the overall standings of Leg Zero….
Leg Zero, stage four rankings
Calculated on shortest distance to finish line.
1. Vestas 11th Hour Racing
2. team AkzoNobel
4. Dongfeng Race Team
5. Team Brunel
6. Turn the Tide on Plastic
7. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag
Leg Zero, overall final rankings
1. MAPFRE 29 points
2. Dongfeng Race Team 24
3. Team Brunel 24
4. team AkzoNobel 22
5. Vestas 11th Hour Racing 20
6. Turn the Tide on Plastic 12
7. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag 9
Now on with this weeks Ten Short Links……
Mapfre set the Volvo Ocean Race bar with overall Leg Zero victory
Spanish team Mapfre completed overall Leg Zero victory in the early hours of Wednesday (16 August) and struck the first psychological blow in the build-up to the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18.
But what the Leg Zero series of qualifiers confirmed above all is that all the teams boasting race experience and/or preparation time are extremely closely matched.The newer teams know they have more work to do, but there are still plenty of positives to take from the progress they have made – and they still have time to close the gap with more than two months to go before the race starts from Alicante on 22 October.
Persistent light winds in the fourth and final race of the Leg Zero qualifying series for the seven Volvo Ocean Race teams forced the shortening of the course today, stopping racing at 0430 UTC with Vestas 11th Hour Racing winning the stage.
The slow forecast for the 770 nm race from St Malo, France to Lisbon, Portugal was anticipated, and closing this non-scoring series will now allow the teams to continue with their preparation in advance of the October 22 start of the 20178-18 race.
What a start to 2017-18 Leg Zero has given us! It’s been exciting, intense, frustrating – and a great form guide for how the main event might play out when the teams assemble on the dock in Alicante in October. But what do the skippers think? We got their reactions immediately after crossing the Leg Zero finish line…
Xabi Fernández, MAPFRE
We had an email a couple of hours ago from Race Control saying that the forecast was no wind at all and they decided to shorten the race which I think is a good decision because this Leg Zero was already becoming quite long and we are looking forward to finish and have a good rest.
After nearly 70 hours of sailing, the fourth and final stage of leg Zero came to an end this morning at 06.30h Spanish time, in front of the Ria de Muros (La Coruña). With the fleet practically at a standstill off the Galician coast, and a prediction of extremely light winds over the next few days, the Race Organization took the decision last night to shorten the course. The last stage of Leg Zero was brought to a close at 06.30h this morning; MAPFRE, third at the time, had totaled 29 points overall, and as such were proclaimed winners of Leg Zero, with an advantage of five points over second-placed Dongfeng Race Team.
Kiwi Jo Aleh twice skippered a 470 to the Olympic podium, and now hopes to make the transition to another mountain in the sport – the Volvo Ocean Race. Suzanne McFadden reports on Aleh’s journey.
Jo Aleh had to seriously ask herself why she was sailing around the southern coast of England, wet, cold and miserable in the dead of night – so far removed from the comfort zone of her dinghy.
Every manoeuvre on board the Volvo Ocean 65 yacht was hard work; hauling on ropes, lugging 400kg of sodden gear from one side of the deck to the other. For almost three days at sea, sleep was a distant memory.
Dee Caffari on the Volvo Race: “I can barely get my head around the enormity of the challenge”
As newly announced skipper of youth-orientated Volvo Ocean Race Team Turn the tide on plastic, I have rarely been so busy, or so inspired.
They say you should be careful what you wish for but nothing could be further from the truth. I am delighted to have been named skipper of team Turn the Tide on Plastic in the Volvo Ocean Race, but I can barely get my head around the enormity of the challenge that lies ahead.
Before race official would officially ink their entry in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race, the seven teams had to compete in four required qualification races, known as Leg Zero. This four stage series began the crescendo toward the October 22 start in Alicante, Spain, but also gave the teams an early sense of the pecking order.
To no one’s surprise, Dongfeng Race Team and MAPFRE – which finished third and fourth respectively in the 2015-15 race, and have had an early start on their training for the upcoming race – completed the Leg Zero series in the top two.
Dream Job – Become a shorecrew engineer in the Volvo Ocean Race
Brunel’s huge variety of jobs will fast forward your career. You could be working at a class leading international pharma company one year. For a real estate developer in an emerging market the next. And your first job could be as a shore crew engineer on the Volvo Ocean Race. Are you up for the challenge of a career with Brunel?
Team MAPFRE return to the affray for the second consecutive edition of the Volvo Ocean Race after a very successful debut in 2014-15, in which they claimed a podium finish no less than four times.
With the return of Team MAPFRE who else to skipper the boat that one of Spains best sailors, Xabi Fernandez. With Xabi as skipper in the 2014/15 campaign the team won leg 4 from Sanya to Auckland and managed four spots on the podium throughout the campaign.
Out of the 12 competitive seasons of the Volvo ocean Races this will be the Eighth edition of the race that Spain has an entry in the mix. With the Race being what is considered the toughest test on water the MAPFRE Crew are desperate to WIN for Spain!
The sailing God that is Pedro Campos is back as Team Director having been involved in every race since 2005/06 when he led the MoviStar Project, this next campaign will be his fifth consecutive project.
So lets kick off this weeks ten short links with results from last weeks Fastnet Race. The race saw some interesting conditions leading up to Lands end and around to the Rock, with a nice push home to Plymouth. In all conditions for the race were a perfect way to introduce the boats and crews to racing these awesome vessels. With Dongfeng taking line honours the rest of the boats followed very closely. Actually only 56 seconds between First and Second place. All boats arriving within an hour. So lets see how they lined up.
2017 Rolex Fastnet Race – Volvo 65
Start: Sun 6 Aug 17 12:40:00
1 – CHN1969 – Dongfeng Race Team- Charles Caudrelier – 9 Aug – 04:18:10 – Pts 90
2 – ESP0 – Mapfre – Xabi Fernández – 9 Aug – 04:19:06 – Pts 84
3 – NED0 – Team Brunel – Bouwe Bekking 9 Aug – 04:25:47 – Pts 80
4 – NED00 – Team Akzonobel – Simeon Tienpont 9 Aug – 04:32:40 – Pts 76
5 – USA0 – Vestas 11th Hour Racing – Charlie Enright 9 Aug – 04:49:11 – Pts 73
6 – HKG0 – Sun Hung Kai Scallywag – David Witt 9 Aug – 04:53:53 – Pts 70
7 – CAY0 – Turn The Tide On Plastic – Dee Caffari 9 Aug – 04:57:32 – Pts 68
This morning saw the boats leave St Malo for the final stage of Leg Zero, taking them from St Malo down to Lisbon. A nice little offshore leg taking them across the Bay of Biscay. So lets take a look at some of the news from the Fastnet Race 2017 and the current stage of Leg Zero. Enjoy.
Leg Zero, Rolex Fastnet Race: Passing the fastnet. On board Dongfeng. Photo by Jeremie Lecaudey. 08August, 2017
Dongfeng gets first Volvo win in the Fastnet Race – but by just 56 seconds
Charles Cauderlier and the crew of Dongfeng Racing get their first win of the new edition in the Rolex Fastnet Race – the race’s so-called Leg 0 – but beat MAPRRE by mere seconds. As dawn broke this morning, a skirmish for first blood in the 2017/8 Volvo Ocean Race was still underway in the Rolex Fastnet Race. Spanish team MAPFRE and Dongfeng Racing had been swapping positions overnight, but in the closing miles towards Plymouth it was Charles Caudrelier’s Dongfeng which drew ahead, beating their Spanish rivals by a mere 56 seconds.
Team NZ boss Grant Dalton revels in Peter Burling v Blair Tuke round the world duel
Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton believes young sailing stars Peter Burling and Blair Tuke will benefit enormously from their round the world adventure and has voiced hope his syndicate can contest the 2019 edition of the famous race.
Tuke has signed with Spanish team Mapfre to do the whole Volvo Ocean Race which starts in October and America’s Cup winning helmsman Burling will do parts of the race with Dutch outfit Team Brunel, who also have Emirates Team New Zealand cyclor Carlo Huisman on board.
Emily Nagel’s Team AkzoNobel put in another good showing in the Rolex Fastnet Race, the second stage of the four-part Leg Zero qualification series.
The Dutch entry, which features Bermudian Nagel, finished fourth competing among the seven-boat fleet of identical Volvo Ocean 65 one design yachts after completing the 605-nautical mile course from Cowes on the Isle of Wight and around Ireland’s Fastnet Rock on Wednesday morning in two days, 15 hours, 52 mins and 40 seconds.
Team AkzoNobel, led by skipper and two-times America’s Cup winner Simeon Tienpont, led its class for much of the race before being passed by China’s Dongfeng Race Team just before dawn on Tuesday.
St Malo, France (August 13, 2017) – MAPFRE maintained their near-faultless performance in Volvo Ocean Race qualifying – and gave themselves the best possible chance of completing overall victory in the four race Leg Zero series – as they led the fleet over the finish line on a short opening stage of the final race out of Saint-Malo.Extended periods of extremely light weather meant that the 770 nm Saint-Malo to Lisbon leg had to be split into two parts. “This is not something we would do for the real race, but is a practical solution in view of a very light forecast for this leg,” said Race Director Phil Lawrence. “We only have limited days until the race proper begins, and time is precious for the teams.”
MAPFRE maintained their near-faultless performance in Volvo Ocean Race qualifying – and gave themselves the best possible chance of completing overall victory in the Leg Zero series – as they led the fleet over the finish line on a short opening stage of the final race out of Saint-Malo. Extended periods of extremely light weather meant that the Saint-Malo to Lisbon leg had to be split into two parts.
The fleet restarted the fourth and final stage of Leg Zero at 0615 UTC on Monday – with the boats spread just over five minutes apart from front to back. Leaders MAPFRE were the first to recommence racing at 06:15:00, followed by Vestas 11th Hour Racing at 06:15:45, Dongfeng Race Team at 06:18:50, Turn the Tide on Plastic at 06:19:07, team AkzoNobel at 06:19:41, and both Team Brunel and SHK Scallywag at 06:20:07.
Team AkzoNobel leaves northern France on final Leg Zero qualifying stage to Portugal
Sunday, August 13, 2017: Team AkzoNobel set off from the French port of St. Malo at 11.00 UTC (13.00 CEST) today bound for Lisbon, Portugal on the fourth and final stage of the around the world race’s Leg Zero qualifier series.
A forecast of extremely light winds for the passage forced the race organisers to split the stage into two sections to avoid issues for the seven-boat fleet when negotiating the fierce tidal streams off the island of Ushant at the south western end of the English Channel.
The Volvo Ocean Race has joined forces with UN Environment in a bid to help reduce marine waste. The ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’ initiative draws attention to the growing menace of plastic waste in the world’s oceans. One of the 65 boats will represent UN Environment’s ‘Clean Seas’ global campaign, which calls on governments, industry and citizens to end the excessive, wasteful use of single-use plastic and eliminate microplastics in cosmetics, during the 2017/18 edition of the professional sporting event.
We only went and pulled a name out of the hat this morning for the draw of new subscribers and picked a Lucky Lady as the winner of a sweet ‘Rolex Fastnet 2017’ Polo Shirt. Well done Claire Davies from Carmarthenshire your Polo will be winging its way to you within the next 10 working days. Congrats!!!!
The surprise team from the 2014-15 campaign claiming a podium finish and winning the homeward leg into Sanya. Charles Caudrelier’s Chinese backed campaign is back for 2017/18 and they return for a second consecutive race with more experience and an ever greater determination to win, They want the win for China, something no other Chinese team has done before.
DongFeng Race team are backed by the DongFeng Motor Corporation, the Chinese motor Manufacturer with its headquarters in the Hubei Province city of Wuhen.
The team have set up a development program in China developing World Class Offshore Racing Sailors from around the world.
In 2014-15 the team mastered the art of getting the brand recognised, The Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 saw DongFeng get a measured response from being on the water. Through their storytelling and media engagement with their fans the DongFeng message got out there.
So leading up to the start of the main event in October we see the boats lining up against each other in the Round the Island Race 2017 and The Rolex Fastnet Race 2017 which started yesterday with an 11am gun. Check out some of the links below for coverage of The Round the Island Race and The Rolex Fastnet Race 2017 start.
Coming in the next couple of weeks there are two more events just for the Volvos to partake.
• August 10: Plymouth, England to St Malo in France (125 nm)
• August 13: St Malo to Lisbon, Portugal (770 nm) Keep coming back for more reports.
MAPFRE took first blood in the ramp up to the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race as skipper Xabi Fernández and his Spanish team showed faultless form to smash the established record time for a monohull around the Isle of Wight. MAPFRE clocked 3 hours 13 minutes 11 seconds in strong conditions off England’s south coast to hold off Team Brunel and notch up victory in the 50nm Around the Island Race.
The Volvo Ocean Race fleet went head to head for the first time on Wednesday 2 August in the Leg Zero Around the Island Race – a 50nm spring around the Isle of Wight. WIth 40+ knot gusts and huge waves, it was more like the Southern Ocean than the Solent – and the resulting footage is epic!
Leg Zero not only takes care of the official qualifying for the Volvo Ocean Race – it’s also the first chance to see the teams in a competitive shakedown against each other.
No points will be carried forward to the race itself, but the overall Leg Zero winner still gets a confidence boost – and here, round-the-world Vendée Globe sailor Conrad Colman fills us in on how it might play out.
Two world speed sailing records fell today in the Sevenstar Triple Crown series at Lendy Cowes Week, subject to ratification by the World Speed Sailing Record Council.
The Spanish Volvo Ocean 65 Mapfre completed the 50 mile course around the Isle of Wight in three hours, 13 minutes and 11 seconds, setting a new outright Around Isle of Wight world record by a monohull yacht.
Interviews with Volvo Ocean Race skippers as preparation is underway for the Rolex Fastnet Race in Cowes. Part of Leg Zero, which acts as a qualifier for the race starting on October 22nd, this will be the first offshore race for the fleet.
00.00 Dee Caffari, Turn the Tide on Plastic 01.47 Simeon Tienpont, AkzoNobel 02.39 David Witt, Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag 03.44 Charlie Enright, Vestas 11th Hour 04.09 Xabi Fernández, Mapfre 04.44 Charles Caudrelier, Dongfeng 06.13 ENDS
Gosport UK – Along with their six rivals in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race, Dongfeng Race Team will line up for the Rolex Fastnet Race on Sunday which promises to be a thrilling battle between crews preparing for the round-the-world marathon.
The 47th biennial Fastnet forms the second part of the VOR Leg Zero series and follows a Round the Island (Isle of Wight) sprint on Wednesday. At 603 nautical miles, the Fastnet will be the first chance for the teams to test themselves against each other over several days at sea.
With the next Olympic Games in Japan still three years away, Ireland’s Annalise Murphy is being trialled as a crew-member in the forthcoming Volvo Ocean Race around the world that starts from Alicante in October.
The 27-year-old Rio 2016 Silver medallist has been sailing with British veteran yachtswoman Dee Caffari’s ‘Turn the Tide On Plastic’ team that is expected to be announced later this month following completion of crew trials.
Volvo Ocean Race: With 2.5 knots of outgoing tide against 18-21 knots of south westerly wind, the Chinese team, skippered by Charles Caudrelier, secured their lead by expertly covering the rest of the tightly bunched fleet.
The two red boats, MAPFRE and Dongfeng Racing won the start but the Spanish team were held up by bad wind coming off Nikata, the biggest boat in the race at 115 feet. In fact, all the Volvo Ocean Race sailors were challenged by having to sail around the record 390-boat fleet in this 605-nautical mile offshore classic.
Team AkzoNobel are the Brand new team to the Volvo Family. Led by Simon Tienpont and backed by the one of the worlds leading Paints and Coatings company AkzoNobel.
The team were first through the gates when it came to getting an entry to the 2017-18 Race. This continues the great Dutch presence that the race has had through the years.
Tienpont is a very experienced sailor being a double America’s cup winner and also he’s no stranger to The Volvo having raced on the Dutch ABN AMRO TWO back in the 2005-06 race where he was the boat rookie.
Tienpont is back! This time with his own campaign and has the hunger to become the very first Dutch skipper to with the race since the Legend that is Conny van Rietschoten – Winner in 1977-78 and 81-82. Tienpont is determined to bring the trophy back to The Netherlands.
With the race finishing in The Hague in 2018, Should he win the Dutch fans are going to be in the perfect place to see their Heroes bring the Trophy home literally.
The Team So Far –
The teams are still coming together as and when we get any news of anyone new we will update this page.
Skipper – Simeon Tienpont
Watch Captain and Boat Performance – Brad Jackson
Helmsman, Sail Trimmer, Crew Medic and Nutritionist – Annemieke Bes
Bowman, Trimmer – Brad Farrand
Helmsman and sail trimmer, Boat Performance – Roberto ‘Chuny’ Bermudes de Castro
Helmsman and Sail Trimmer, Sail Maker – Luke Molloy
Helmsman and Sail Trimmer, Boat Captain – Nicolai Sehested
Here are your 10 short links to start the week off. With the Rolex Fastnet Race 2017 fast approaching and the Volvo’s taking part this year it will be great to see how they perform. So check out some of the stories below hopefully that will be a good precursor for the weeks to come.
Among the 400 boat fleet setting off from the Solent on 6 August in the Rolex Fastnet Race will be three of offshore racing’s most prestigious classes. Grabbing the headlines will be the one design VO65s as the Rolex Fastnet Race
MARK TURNER was named CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race in June ’16. Following his career as a sailor, Turner founded OC Sport, a global sports marketing company specializing in professional sailing, amateur cycling and marathon running. In May, the VOR announced a €50M ($58.4M) investment in new boats with “foiling” and “flying” technology for future editions of the race.
The Volvo Ocean Race has unveiled a 10-strong squad of Onboard Reporters to tell the story of the toughest test of a team in professional sport.
Featuring hardened media pros from six nations around the world, the group of Onboard Reporters for the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18 includes award-winning adventure photographers, extreme sports filmmakers, the documentary-making son of a Volvo Ocean Race legend and a former soldier–turned–journalist who has completed two tours of the Middle East.
#VOR – Experienced offshore sailor and Kerry’s own Damian Foxall will set sail again in the Volvo Ocean Race — this time with the former Team Vestas Wind.
The five-race VOR veteran (who won with Groupama in the 2011-12 race) and Afloat.ie’s International Sailor of the Month for June last year has been named among the 10-strong crew for Vestas 11th Hour Racing that will depart from Alicante less than 100 days from now.
We speak to Musto ambassador Ian Walker about his Volvo Ocean Race win, why food and clothing are so important offshore, his views on the America’s Cup, his new desk job, sailing for fun, and 20 years of the John Merricks Sailing Trust.
Britain’s Dee Caffari will lead ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’ – a mixed, youth focused team with a strong sustainability message in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18. Her campaign, already backed by the Mirpuri Foundation and Ocean Family Foundation, is dedicated to the issue of ocean health. The sixth confirmed team out of a possible eight for the upcoming edition will amplify United Nations Environment’s ‘Clean Seas: Turn the Tide on Plastic’ campaign throughout the eight months of the race, which covers 45,000 nautical miles of racing around the world, taking in 12 Host Cities on six continents.
Every child has a dream and for some young Chinese sailors that dream is to be able to sail and race on the world’s oceans and perhaps one day sail around the globe. For a group of Chinese youngsters that dream came one step closer when they had the chance to visit the headquarters of Dongfeng Race Team on Saturday and meet some of their sailing heroes – young men like Wolf, Black and Horace. The visit to the Dongfeng Race Team base at Lorient in France – part of Dongfeng Race Team’s long-standing commitment to helping to develop the sport of offshore sailing in China – proved a wonderful opportunity for the youngsters to expand their knowledge and to see firsthand what is involved in racing around the world.
“We’re really struggling at the moment to make the boat go as fast as it’s meant to.” That was the team AkzoNobel navigator Jules Salter soon after leaving Falmouth, England. Four days later I find him lying asleep at the nav station, reams of data streaming across one of his two laptops. Just above him sit the ‘magic numbers’. Our speed over ground has been faster than our true wind speed for about 20 minutes now. Already we’re seeing the edge of what the boat is capable of.