Two-time Olympic champion Marcelo FERREIRA (BRA), GRAEL's 20 year partner in the Star, will temporarily give up his crew position.
'Nobody likes to be substituted, even more so during an important part of the race. It would be really nice to sail into Rio de Janeiro. But it will be good for the team to have Horácio onboard. He is an excellent sailor as well as our technical coordinator. It is a precautionary measure. If anything breaks at sea that's fixable, we can do it with him onboard,' said FERREIRA, the boat's trimmer and cook.
GRAEL, upset for not being able to count on FERREIRA in such an important leg, made sure to emphasize that he will be back onboard in Rio de Janeiro. 'Marcelo will be back on the team when we arrive at home. With the problems we have had in the last leg and in the In Port race, it'll be important to have Horácio onboard. We will once again have little time for testing everything and he will be our guarantee that we will be able to fix most of the problems that we are likely to encounter,' he explained.
In the last few weeks, the Brasil 1 has had to deal with several setbacks. In the second leg, two days after leaving South Africa, the sailboat sustained some structural damage and had to return to shore. Then, when it returned to the race, it lost its mast, which significantly delayed the boat's arrival in Australia. This Saturday, during the In Port race in Melbourne, the boat encountered a hydraulic problem with the keel. 'It was generally agreed on that we need to take Horácio with us, even more in a such a hard leg. It is out of precaution,' added GRAEL.
An example of the usefulness of having the technical director onboard occurred in the first leg, when he was part of the crew that finished in third place on the Vigo, Spain to Cape Town, South Africa leg. On the 14th day at sea, he fixed a problem with the Brasil 1's keel caused by a short circuit. 'I am here to help the team. I already sailed in one leg and we finished in third place. When we were in Cape Town I still had that urge to sail. Now, Torben invited me and I will take on some more tasks,' confirmed CARABELLI, a Uruguayan born naturalized Brazilian. He is also a two-time Junior World Champion in the Snipe and coordinated, during an eight month period, the boat's construction at the shipyard in Indaiatuba, in the interior of São Paulo state.
The fourth leg, between New Zealand and Rio de Janeiro, is not only the longest one in the race, with 6,700 nautical miles (approximately 12,400 km), but also the most demanding one as the sailors have to brave the much feared Southern Ocean and round Cape Horn, before sailing up the Brazilian coast.
The start of the third leg will take place at 1300 hours local time on Sunday 12 February in the bay at Port Philip. Until them, the sailors and ground crew still have a lot of work in getting the Brasil 1 in shape to overcome the next challenges.
(Up to and including Leg 3 In Port race)
|1||ABN AMRO ONE||NED||Mike SANDERSON (NZL)||32.5|
|2||ABN AMRO TWO||NED||Sebastien JOSSE (FRA)||25|
|3||movistar||ESP||Bouwe BEKKING (NED)||18|
|4||Pirates of the Caribbean||USA||Paul CAYARD (USA)||16.5|
|5||Brasil 1||BRA||Torben GRAEL (BRA)||16|
|6||Ericsson Racing Team||SWE||Neal MCDONALD (GBR)||14.5|
|7||Brunel||AUS||Grant WHARINGTON (AUS)||11.5|
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