Volvo Ocean Race. No Pain, No Gain, As Doldrums Take Their Toll

The Volvo Ocean Race fleet is facing another 48 hours of excruciating sailing as the teams plugged deeper into a massive expanse of windless ocean. Lying ahead of them is a 400-mile gulf that stretches as far south as New Caledonia, severely hampering progress towards New Zealand as Leg 6 enters its 14th day. And with the finish line in Auckland still more than 1,500 miles away, a glance at the forecast provides little relief with no sign of breeze ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Leaders hold On

It’s all about pressure, wind pressure that is as on Monday afternoon the back markers had made big gains until the wind pressure returned for the leaders. Heartbreaking stuff for MAPFRE and Dongfeng, but these guys are all made of stern stuff and will bounce back. As team AkzoNobel and Scallywag bumped up against an area of calm, those chasing were enjoying 10 to 15 knots of wind and making impressive gains. In fact, the distance from first to last ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Fleet Compressing Again

by Richard Crockett The past week has been very interesting as the fleet positions have changed – and changed again. Conditions are tough and relentless out there, with big gains and losses having been made. Interestingly the two top placed boats overall, MAPFRE and Dongfeng, slipped way off the back of the bus for several days, and looked dead and buried. But this is a game of never giving up, having the courage to choose a course and stick with ... Read More »

SAS Annual Awards Announced

South African Sailing announced the winners of the annual SA Sailing awards at Victoria Lake Club in Germiston last week. Leading the way were the pair of Benji Daniel and Alex Burger who were awarded the Owen Aisher Trophy as the 2017 SA Sailors of the Year. The young pair made their mark in winning the 29er World Championships in California last August. This followed a podium position in the USA National Championships and was achieved in a world class ... Read More »

A Hot Tip from Sophie Ciszek, crew on MAPFRE

Sophie is hot property on the Volvo Ocean race as she is a top crew who adds immense value to every boat she sails on. Here she offers advice on how to prepare for bad weather. How do you prepare mentally for a stage with conditions as hard as those that can be found in the Volvo Ocean Race? Mentally I always prepare for the worst scenario. That is, if the forecast is for 40 knots, I tell myself it ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Brunel leads into the Luzon Strait

Team Brunel has been leading the Volvo Ocean Race fleet into the Luzon Strait between Taiwan and the Philippines. The six boats are tucked towards the southern tip of Taiwan, anticipating a turn to the north after leaving Taiwan to port. “We’ve been bouncing upwind. Everyone is still pretty close. Whoever puts their bow down for a little while goes a little bit faster than the other,” said team AkzoNobel skipper Simeon Tienpont. “Brunel is a little bit ahead, we ... Read More »

International Olympic Committee. It’s Time for Africa!

By Richard Crockett The IOC has issued a press release, which is of interest to all sports persons in this country, Africa as a whole and youth sailors. For the Buenos Aires games from 6 – 18 October, sailing is included, but in a very watered down manner, with the following 5 categories/events: MEN – 2 EVENTS Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X Men’s Kiteboarding – IKA WOMEN – 2 EVENTS Women’s Windsurfer – RS:X Women’s Kiteboarding – IKA MIXED – 1 ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Leg 6 is Going to Be Tough, Complicated and Dangerous

Charles Caudrelier, the skipper of Dongfeng Race Team in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race, is quite open about his goal for Leg 6 that takes the fleet from Hong Kong to Auckland – that’s to try to avoid having a bad result. The Frenchman who is leading the Chinese team sponsored by Dongfeng Motor Corporation on its second successive campaign, has always regarded this leg and the one that preceded it as potential trip hazards. The reason is that, for ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Akzonobel Leads Fleet Out of Hong Kong

Simeon Tienpont’s team AkzoNobel led the Volvo Ocean Race fleet away from the Hong Kong. Racing started in a light, 8-10 knot easterly with AkzoNobel, SHK/Scallywag, and Team Brunel the first across the line, slipping upwind under full sail, with the spectator fleet in tow. But shortly after clearing land, the wind started to increase to 15 – 20 knots, and the enormous Code 0 sails were furled in favour of smaller headsails. Conditions are forecast to deteriorate further over ... Read More »

Volvo Ocean Race. Preview of Leg 6 to Auckland

Leg 6 to Auckland takes the teams on a 6,100 nautical mile race to the City of Sails. The fleet will start by crossing the South China Sea to the northern tip of the Philippines. After that, it’s out into the Pacific and a long drag race to the south-east, dodging the many island chains of Polynesia until they reach Auckland. It’s another leg that will be dominated strategically by the north to south transit of the Doldrums, which proved ... Read More »

World Sailing – Presidential Newsletter

My fellow Sailors and friends, Let me start my first newsletter of 2018 by wishing you all a happy new year and much success, both on and off the water. In my last note I expressed my excitement and optimism about 2018, and I truly hope that we are able to share very special moments throughout the year. 2018 is a crucial one for sailing, and I expect to see us make clear progress in all our priorities, including increasing ... Read More »


The Spanish MAPFRE team took victory in Guangzhou to open a five-point lead at the top of the In-Port Race Series leader board. More importantly though, she is alone at the top of the In-Port Race Series leader board, after a wire to wire win. “It was very tricky racing in the river of course,” said MAPFRE skipper Xabi Fernández. “We had a very good start and then we were able to stay in phase with the wind and current ... Read More »

Guangzhou Welcomes the Volvo Ocean Race

The Volvo Ocean Race fleet was treated to a warm welcome in Guangzhou, China on Thursday afternoon, after arriving 70 miles up the Pearl River Delta from Hong Kong. The Chinese Dongfeng Race Team was in the spotlight for the festivities upon arrival. Sitting in second place on the overall leader board, behind race leaders MAPFRE, Dongfeng was feted by the local fans. After proceeding with the public arrival festivities, the skippers then met the local media. Her are some ... Read More »

Super-fast Sailing Grand Prix Debuts in Adelaide

  Many of the world’s best sailors have gathered in Adelaide, South Australia, to test their skills in a new series that is set to shake up the sport. The first of five SuperFoiler Grand Prix regattas begins this weekend on the outer harbour of Port Adelaide, pitting six of the new ultra-fast trimaran superfoilers against each other on a 2km circuit. The brainchild of Australian sailing entrepreneur Bill Macartney, who shook up yachting in the 1990s with his 18-foot ... Read More »

Microplastic Particles Found in Antarctic Waters

Microplastic particles have been found in the oceans close to Antarctica, data collected during the Volvo Ocean Race has revealed. The new data comes from the Volvo Ocean Race Science Programme, funded by Volvo Cars. Scientists analysed water samples, gathered at points during Leg 2 of the Race, between Lisbon and Cape Town and Leg 3 from Cape Town to Melbourne. The groundbreaking results, announced at the Volvo Ocean Race Hong Kong Ocean Summit, found microplastics in the Southern Ocean ... Read More »