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5 December 2005, 05:16 pm
Not Long Now For Sunergy And Friends
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Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006

Australian entry Sunergy and Friends are approaching Cape Town, South Africa and the end of leg one of the Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006. As they sprint towards the line there is mixed weather ahead for the final entrant left competing in leg one.
As the finish line nears, navigator Campbell FIELD (NZL) sent in the following report.

'Well, under 400 nm to finish for the good ship Sunergy & Friends, and we are all very ready to arrive in Cape Town. This leg has been long (longer than necessary!), and a real test of patience and willpower, being in the position we have been in for the whole leg.

'We had our boom damage which set us back 15+ hours, which turned unto 1,000's of miles. We had some really testing weather situations that set us back and really tested our patience. We have redefined the saying 'patience is a virtue', it is now 'patience at the right time is a virtue; there are definitely times to be impatient'.

'We have learnt a lot about this boat, and a lot about each other. It will be interesting to see how the lessons learnt from this leg are applied and used in the future. I will watch with interest (I was only ever contracted to leg one of this race due to other commitments) how the team fares in leg two of this race!

'We will be in the process of approaching Cape Town in the early hours of tomorrow morning (so long as our patience with the weather is not tested further), so this may well be our last QFB. I hope that our emails have been entertaining and informative, and that you have enjoyed some of the stories that will inevitably come off of a boat packed with nine Antipodeans of questionable state of mind, and a token pom.

Weather

From a weather standpoint, the final sprint toward the finish for Sunergy and Friends is looking fairly quick and straight forward. A southerly wind along the route will give reaching conditions in 15-20 knots. A high pressure area is chasing the crew down from the west, threatening to take their breeze away from them. However given the fast angle of sail allowed by this breeze, Volvo Ocean Race meteorologist is confident that they will be able pace just ahead of the high and out run is light wind grasp.

Sunergy and Friends will experience a slight drop in wind speed before the finish. In addition, the winds will back left and become southeast, making the final miles an upwind starboard tack to the finish. But this should not be a significant slow down for them unless they are delayed for some reason.

The last few miles into Cape Town could be tricky. The southeast winds will put the finish in the shadow of Table Mountain, where winds will die and become shifty. This could be a final frustration to the crew, with the finish line in sight, but tricky winds challenging their progress.

Position Report At 1600 Hours UTC, 5 December 2005

Team Nation Skipper Latitude Longitude DTF SMG DTL DTLC TLPTS Arrival Time/ETA Elapsed Time RPTD Overall
ABN AMRO ONE NED Mike SANDERSON (NZL) 33 54.05S 018 25.95E 0 0 0 0 10.5 01/12/2005 - 1324 UTC 019d 00h 24m 02s 11.5 1
ABN AMRO TWO NED Sebastian JOSSE (FRA) 33 54.05S 018 25.95E 0 0 0 0 8 01/12/2005 - 1956 UTC 019d 06h 56m 34s 9.5 4
Brasil 1 BRA Torben GRAEL (BRA) 33 54.05S 018 25.95E 0 0 0 0 7.5 02/12/2005 - 0458 UTC 019d 15h 58m 48s 10.5 2
Ericsson Racing Team SWE Neal MCDONALD (GBR) 33 54.05S 018 25.95E 0 0 0 0 7 03/12/2005 - 0547 UTC 020d 16h 47m 38s 10.5 2
Sunergy and Friends AUS Grant WHARINGTON (AUS) 35 01.56S 011 57.20E 329 15.2 0 0 4.5 06/12/05 - 1251 UTC - 4.5 5
movistar ESP Bouwe BEKKING (NED) 37 07.24N 008 31.60W - - - - - - - - -
Pirates of the Caribbean USA Paul CAYARD (USA) 38 41.54N 009 24.95W - - - - - - - - -

DTF: Distance to finish
SMG: Speed made good
DTL: distance to leader
DTLC: distance to leader change; the difference between the distance from the boat to the leader taken at the time of the last six hour poll, and the distance from the boat to the leader at the previous poll
TLPTS: total leg points to date inc. scoring gate points if yacht maintains current position
RPTD: Race points to date inc. in-port race points, scoring gate points and leg points the yacht would score if yacht maintains current position.
Overall: position in race overall if yacht maintains current position.

For a complete list of all the news about the Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006 CLICK HERE.

Event Media (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Adam HAWKINS trimming into the setting sun onboard Sunergy and Friends in the South Atlantic:© Campbell FIELD/Sunergy and Friends
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