From the jaws of defeat
|1||Assa Abloy||25 48.40N||080 05.72W||0||0||0||0||28|
|2||illbruck||25 48.40N||080 05.72W||0||0||0||0||36|
|3||Tyco||25 48.40N||080 05.72W||0||0||0||0||24|
|4||SEB||25 41.24N||079 44.20W||21||21||-20||6.2||17|
|5||News||25 41.12N||079 38.72W||25||25||-15||2.7||23|
|6||Amer One||25 45.16N||079 23.72W||38||38||-19||5.7||25|
|7||djuice||25 34.84N||077 09.60W||164||164||-20||6.8||19|
|8||Amer Too||25 38.44N||077 06.16W||166||166||-20||7.5||8|
As so often seems to happen, the outcome of a leg of the Volvo Ocean Race has rested more on current than wind. Careful positioning by Assa Abloy navigator, Mark Rudiger, saw the golden Kevlar hulled boat sneaking in out of the tide just a few miles short of Miami. With illbruck helplessly drifting backwards in an area of no wind Neal McDonald and his crew proved victorious.
Visibly exhausted after a week of exceptionally close racing, McDonald admitted to celebrating his second leg win by taking a quick nap on the way in from the finish line, commenting with characteristic understatement, "it has been very intense during the past couple of days."
"You don't really know quite what was going to happen. The weather was pretty unpredictable. If it had been a nice steady wind to the finish, it would have been a lot easier. But with the clouds and the storms and all that nonsense, it was quite hard work."
For race favourite, illbruck the end of the leg marked one of many dips in a roller coaster trip. Soon after the start in Rio illbruck were hit by SEB in a port/starboard collision leaving them trailing the fleet. Undaunted, they sailed through the whole fleet to claim and reclaim the lead several times in a game of cat and mouse with Tyco and Assa Abloy.
For more than a week, illbruck, Assa Abloy and Tyco sailed within sight of each other, constantly swapping positions. Three days ago illbruck lost an all important spinaker overboard and finally to surrender leg victory in the swirling current off Miami.
Tyco sailed a constant leg with good speed and clever tactics. This is Tyco's third top three result in a row, showing a consistency that was only broken up by the rudder damage on leg two. They have now overtaken News Corp in the overall standings and moved up to fourth place.
illbruck - pipped at the post