With the transatlantic leg of the Volvo Ocean Race due to start this Sunday, April 28th, from Annapolis, the first crew changes are beginning to filter through.
Formal crew lists are not expected until after midday on Friday, April 26th, but News Corp, winner of leg six from Miami to Baltimore, is the first team to reveal their line-up.
Meteorologist, Nick White, will work on weather for the leg from the shore, making space for Campbell Field, the son of campaign director, Ross. Field, from New Zealand, will join the team as a navigator. He will provide on-board technological expertise, working alongside tactician, Matt Humphries.
Field, 31, is an expert in on-board computer and navigation systems. Field is on secondment from B&G, one of the world's leading providers of yachting navigation electronics. He has also more than nine years experience offshore big-boat racing, also being part of the America's Challenge crew during the 1997-98 race.
At 105 kg, Field will also bring valuable physical strength to the team as the tough 12-day slog to La Rochelle, France, gets underway.
"Campbell is an electronics expert," said Team News Corp skipper, Jez Fanstone. "He knows the B&G gear on the boat inside out - the race can be won or lost through the quality of on-board data. Campbell is joining us to make sure the data we receive is spot-on. He's also a top class navigator and yachtsman and will be a great asset when the going gets tough on deck."
Complimenting the Field/Humphries team in the navigation station will be watch leaders Gordon Maguire and Ian Walker. Stuart Childerly from the UK will be back on board after his successful first leg with Team News Corp from Miami to Baltimore.
"We've again strengthened our team," said Ross Field, Team News Corp Campaign Director. "Each leg in this race demands different skills and we change our crew accordingly. We had a great result in leg six and we'll be looking to repeat this performance. Campbell is my son, and I'm very proud that Jez and the team have selected him for this leg."
Team News Corp's complete crew list for leg seven of the Volvo Ocean Race is:
Jez Fanstone - skipper
Ian (Barney) Walker - watch leader/helmsman
Gordon Maguire - watch leader/helmsman
Matt Humphries - tactician/navigator
Campbell Field - navigator
Stuart Childerly - helmsman
Alastair (Alby) Pratt - sail coordinator/trimmer
Craig Smith - helmsman/trimmer
Peter Doriean - trimmer
Nigel King - trimmer
Damien Duke - bowman
Justin Slattery - bowman
Leg seven of the Volvo Ocean Race will start from Annapolis at 1300 local time on April 28th. This 3,400 nautical mile leg takes the fleet across the Atlantic to La Rochelle in France, and is expected to arrive on May 11th.