by Adam Cort

Adam Cort is SAIL’s executive editor. He lives and sails in the Boston area.

The good news for the Volvo Ocean Race fleet is that for Leg 2, which starts today, the boats will be able to sail the entire 6,125 miles from Cape Town to the finish in Abu Dhabi.

A Look Back at Leg 1

by Adam Cort, Posted November 19, 2014
Pity the poor Volvo Ocean Race sailor. While it may seem like forever since the fleet arrived in Cape Town after 24 days at sea, in fact it’s only been a little over three weeks.
Typically you only expect to see extreme sailing footage from the offshore legs of the Volvo Ocean Race, with the in-port racing providing a much more “civilized” form of competition. Not in Cape Town.
Abu Dhabi has prevailed in Leg 1 of the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race edging out Dongfeng by the slimmest of margins in the opening chapter of what is looking to be one of the most competitive VOR’s ever.

Working their Way South

by Adam Cort, Posted October 28, 2014
After spending a full week in first place following their speedy exit from the doldrums, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing has fallen behind Team Brunel. However, Brunel’s advantage may prove short-lived as the fleet picks its way through or around the light winds in the South Atlantic as they work their way toward the finish in Cape Town.
A week and a half into the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race, the competition has been even tighter than anticipated as the fleet makes its way south in a tight bunch. Although the all-women SCA team was the first to exit the Mediterranean via the Straits of Gibraltar, the other boats quickly reeled them back in as they sailed into a calm.
Chinese-flagged Dongfeng sustained the first major damage of the race when it hit an unidentified submerged object that destroyed the boat’s port rudder.
Thus far the racing in the 2014-15 VOR has been as close as any in the race’s long history, thanks in part to the fact that this year’s fleet is made up of identical one-designs.
Chart briefings are like snowflakes in that no two are the same. This was especially true of the one Al Ashford of Horizon Yacht Charters gave before my family and I set sail on a recent weeklong getaway in Antigua—if for no other reason than the amount of time Al spent talking about the seas.
Sailboats can be remarkably noisy when it comes time to dock or anchor. The wind, the rumble of the auxiliary, the chatter of the windlass: all these things and more can make it surprisingly hard to hear what the person at the other end of even a smaller boat is saying. 
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