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Yacht Race to Face Monsoon in South China Sea

The boats in Sanya, China. Image: Paul Todd / Volvo Ocean Race

The sailing teams of the Volvo Ocean Race will shortly face a battle against the elements on their way to New Zealand.

Currently gearing up for a short sprint – the Sanya Haitang Bay In-Port Race on 18th February 2012 in China – the teams will soon turn to the ocean for Leg 4 which will take them through the South China Sea between Taiwan and the Philippines. The race meteorologist Gonzalo Infante is forecasting a North Easterly winds ranging from 35 – 40 knots, just north of Taiwan.

The teams will be heading for Auckland, in New Zealand, which will represent a homecoming for many of the crew members. The managing director of CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand, Grant Dalton, commented:

“Auckland is important for two reasons. It’s important because there’s so much history of titanic struggles into Auckland – the last three races I did we were never more than a couple of minutes apart the whole way – and it’s important for some of the guys because they’re coming home. It’s both pressure and motivation. You’re motivated to sit on the rail for the last two and a half days if you have to.”

The current standings are as follows:

 

  1. Team Telefónica  95 points
  2. CAMPER with Emirates Team NZ  80 points
  3. Groupama Sailing Team  71 points
  4. PUMA Ocean Racing by BERG  48 points
  5. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing  39 points
  6. Team Sanya  16 points

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Stories from the Sport Desk at The Global Herald.

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