The longest and most difficult leg of the Volvo Ocean Race has proven to be just that. The boats are dropping out of Leg 5 left and right. By the time this hits your inbox, things will likely have changed again, but as we prepare the newsletter we can report that there are only two boats left racing in Leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race with two more having suspended racing for the time being.
After being neck and neck with PUMA for several days, Groupama pushed the boat to its limits and broke its mast above the first spreader about 60 nautical miles from Punta del Este, Uruguay.
Despite pulling off an amazing repair to the boat 1,700 miles offshore, Team Abu Dhabi had to announce on Tuesday that they are pulling out of Leg 5 rather than risk further damage to the boat, and will have the boat shipped from Chile to Brazil to be repaired so that they can rejoin the race for Leg 6.
Camper has been sidetracked to Chile where its shore crew has created a makeshift loft out of two containers to repair the boat.
And Team Sanya turned back to New Zealand just days after the race start after suffering severe damage. The boat is being shipped to the US where it will rejoin the race for in-port racing and Leg 7 out of Miami.
Despite being struck by a rogue wave and suffering some damage, Telefonica has managed to catch up and is in a heated race with Puma, the only boat in this leg to have not yet suffered any major setbacks. But with just under 600 miles to go, there’s still ample time for that.
For all the latest news, which is certain to change at a moment’s notice, go to www.volvooceanrace.com.