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3 November 2005, 09:38 am
The Rain In Spain
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Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006
Sanxenxo, Galicia, Spain

Whoever came up with the immortal line, "the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain", clearly had not been to Sanxenxo. For the past two days, the Volvo Ocean Race teams have been pelted with rain and battered by southerly winds gusting over 50 knots.
All good preparation for the rigours of the race, you might think, but for crews working feverishly to be ready for the In Port race this Saturday, these are far from ideal conditions. Boat jobs take twice or four times as long to complete in the wind and the rain. Everything short of a two kilo club hammer blows off the deck, it becomes impossible to heat-seal the ends of new ropes with anything other than an oxy-acetylene burner; the formula for high-strength epoxy surely does not include, 'stir in half a litre of rainwater' does it?

Some of the boats, including the ABN AMRO duo and MoviStar, managed to fit in an early morning sail around the bay early on Tuesday morning, but since then everyone has been sheltering in Sanxenxo marina. Everyone that is, except for the Australians on Premier Challenge. Grant WHARINGTON's team had been due in Sanxenxo two days ago, but with gale force winds standing directly in their path, the Volvo Open 70 was forced to divert to La Coruna on the northern coast of Galicia, and shelter from the worst of the wind until conditions became a little more acceptable.

Following the 50 knot winds battering the Volvo Ocean Race village early this morning, causing flooded pavilions and fused power supplies, the weather does seem to be improving. The Aussies were looking to complete the final 140 miles of their voyage yesterday. After their epic journey just to make it to Sanxenxo, it remains to be seen whether they will be in any fit state to compete in the In Port race this weekend.

On the other hand, the weather pundits are suggesting that Saturday might just have a five knot zephyr - after all this, could racing be postponed for lack of wind?

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

Event Media (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Foul weather gear is the dress code on land as lashing rain and 42 knot winds batter the port:© Patrick Anderson
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