Team Russia have moved up to fifth place in the Volvo Ocean Race and are reeling in the Delta Lloyd boat rapidly. Heading past the Cape Verde, west of Senegal, the fleet is tightly bunched, locked in heated competition. This is some of the most remarkable sailing ever seen in a round the world race.
Some context to this: Team Russia is the only privately-funded yacht in the Volvo Ocean Race. Although Oleg Zherebtsov has “a bit of money” it doesn’t really compare to the cash that the corporate sponsors have thrown at the other teams. But this in itself is a good thing; our team is less pressured by the need for corporate engagement than the other 7 crews, and consequently are less stressed and more able to focus on the task of sailing.
We are the underdogs in this race, and the pundits are expecting us to come last.
But Kostaka has a secret weapon: her spray rails.
The double-step spray rails on Kosatka’s bow means she rides slightly higher at the bow when at speed in the open ocean. Lifting her bow just a few inches means less drag and more speed when the wind is just right. In a race where everything is to play for, this technical advantage could mean the difference between first and last place. I’ve seen this yacht in action, and you wouldn’t believe the speed she can move at – she is FAST.
In any spare second you have, say a prayer for Kosatka and her crew – she is sailing for whales and dolphins, and every place she gains in the race is a step closer to securing the Marine Protected Areas we are campaigning for.
Watch the race as the data comes in: http://www.traclive.dk/events/event_20081011_VORLeg1/
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