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to “er” is human…

Last week’s Ocean Race in-port race left me thinking ‘Where is Ken  Shirley when we need him?’

I switched the audio off during last week’s In Port racing. Sam Davies is an accomplished sailor and interviews very well but the preponderance of “er, er, er” peppering her commentary, I found to be somewhat wearing. I was not alone as I received communications from several who had the same problem which is a real shame because her insights as a current IMOCA sailor are well worth hearing

I would have thought that, in the intervening week, some feedback and/or coaching would have been performed to eradicate that from the commentary. Also, as a sailor, the technicalities used posed no problem but for the wider non-sailing audience, which I am sure is a much bigger market, I am pretty certain (and have been told as such) that the terms used leave them very much in the dark.

That all said, in the VO65s the Polish team, Wind Whisper showed that their win in the In-Port Race was rather more than the luck some people suggested as they led the Sprint Cup fleet out of the in-port section of the leg.

Then came the main event with the IMOCAs showing their pace and power with speeds from the leaders around 30 knots. Biotherm led the boats away with Pre-Race favorite 11th Hour coming off the line slowly in a poor position but working their way through the fleet, well to third place anyway which I suppose is only mid-fleet.

Of course, speed wins races but while that is important it must be remembered that although the VO65s are virtually bulletproof managing the IMOCAs is going to be important with managing the risks and knowing when perhaps they should back off and protect the boat. 

Of course, the broadcast as the boats leave Aliante and head offshore is all through relatively flat water and there is no guarantee that within a matter of days, or perhaps even hours this order will be different. In fact just as the broadcast faded out the boat which had led from the start, Biotherm was overhauled by Holcim PRB.

Ahead of them is wind which is already expected to strengthen and of course, as the breeze is out of the North the sea state is also likely to increase.

1,900 or so Nautical Miles to go to Cabo Verde.