USA. Volvo Ocean Race: ABN AMRO TWO forced to 3rd by movistar but optimistic about In Port race Print E-mail
Wednesday, 19 April 2006
Camille Green:

As Seb Josse and the young crew of ABN AMRO TWO crossed the finishing line in sixth position in leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race at 10.41.59 EDT yesterday, the battle for second place in the overall standings had never looked so tight.

Despite a disappointing result for the talented young French skipper and his young crew, who finished last in this latest leg to Baltimore, the overall picture remains extremely positive for ABN AMRO TWO. The perennial underdogs of the race now lie in third place overall, only one point behind movistar, but also only a half point ahead of Paul Cayard on Pirates. The upcoming in port race in Chesapeake Bay and the forthcoming sprints to New York and Portsmouth will be crucial to securing that all important podium position. The battle for precious points looks set to intensify over the coming weeks.

Leg 5 has been the toughest so far in the race for ABN AMRO TWO. Despite a strong start in the bay of Rio de Janeiro, the crew had to tackle a series of problems with the boat and constantly challenging wind conditions in both hemispheres. From broken head pumps to broken rigging, the crew focused on sailing within their capabilities. However, the racing conditions throughout the leg presented few opportunities for Seb Josse and the navigator Simon Fisher to catch the leaders. In the end the ‘kids’ only finished a short distance behind Ericsson and Brasil 1 as Chesapeake Bay provided a window of opportunity, but ABN AMRO TWO ran out of time and space in which to catch their adversaries.

Speaking from dockside, Seb Josse was in a reflective mood, concluding, ““It has been a really close battle but it is not really a good result from us. We sailed really well the first few days but then lost a lot of places in one moment on about day three of the leg and we never really come back from that. The reason I can not be too disappointed is because our crew work was excellent and I think we sailed better in this leg than in any other, so I can not be disappointed in that respect. I am not too worried with the result as the race is not finished yet and there is still plenty of it left. I really enjoyed the closeness of the racing. It is something that I am familiar with in the single-handed sailing I do and I find it very exciting. It gives us motivation and makes us push that little bit harder.”

American George Peet commented from the dock: “It feels great to be back here, it is actually been about 13 or 14 months since I was last here. It is good to be back – it is warm and sunny, we would have liked to have been on the podium again but you can’t have it all. We had our fair share of difficult sailing conditions, a couple of nights ago we had some fairly serious squalls – we saw up to about 50 knots so it was all on there for a while. Tactically we knew it was going to be tricky, the people that got ahead were going to stay in front and we were just in the lead at the wrong times.”

ABN AMRO TWO will now get the boat ready for the Baltimore/Annapolis in port race on April 29 and then for the short hop to New York which starts on May 7.
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 19 April 2006 )
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