30 november, 2008

Ericsson först till Indien – Se Video + MP3

Ericsson Racing Teams internationella båt, Ericsson 4, med brasilianaren Torben Grael som skeppare, vann även den andra etappen av Volvo Ocean Race från Kapstaden i Sydafrika till Kochi på Malabarkusten i Indien. Strax efter klockan fyra på söndags morgonen, lokal tid (runt midnatt i Sverige) gled Ericsson 4 långsamt över mållinjen.

Bakom kämpade systerbåten Ericsson 3, med nordisk besättning, mot spanska Telefonica Blue om andra platsen. När Ericsson 4 gick i mål såg det ut som om Telefonica låg bäst till för att knipa andra platsen.

– Jag är verkligen glad över att vara först i mål, säger Torben Grael. Etappen hade många svårigheter. Det har varit både vått och kallt. Och de lätta vindarna i Doldrums har varit besvärliga. Men som sagt; Vi är glada över att vara först till Kochi.

Navigatören Jules Salter var nästa mer lättad en glad.

– Ja, det är en lättnad att vara i mål. De lätta vindarna i slutet av etappen har varit mer besvärliga än de starka i början. Det har varit svårt att räkna ut var vinden ska komma ifrån. Men till slut gick det ju bra, säger Jules Salter.

Det tog Ericsson 4 drygt två veckor att segla de cirka 4 450 sjömilen (cirka 8 250 km) från Kapstaden till Kochi. Men det var först på tolfte dagen som man ryckte ifrån det övriga fältet. Fram till dess hade Torben Grael ofta legat efter sin kollega Anders Lewander på Ericsson 3. Men Ericsson 4 lyckades fånga vindar under ett regnmoln och lämnade de andra båtarna långt bakom. Sedan dess har man bevakat sin position in till målet

Båtarna kommer nu att stanna i Kochi i cirka två veckor. På Luciadagen smäller starskottet för etapp tre av Volvo Ocean Race. Målet på etappen är Singapore dit båtarna beräknas komma dagen före julafton.

Länk: www.volvooceanrace.org

ERICSSON 4 LEG TWO DAY 15 QFB: received 29.11.08 1547 GMT

We are currently approaching Cochin in very light winds, 2 miles offshore of the sub-continent, trying to find some night breeze to get us to the finish line.

The air smells damp, earthy and of wood smoke which is generally a good sign that we may get a few zephyrs to move us on our way. The day has been frustrating and we have been slowed by clouds rain and a peak of 5.6 knots of wind speed.

This leg has ended like the lamb rather than the first week of lion-like conditions. We have seen the fleet strung out over 600 miles yet still to me, the final outcome is unsure as the weather is so variable and light, and the factor that these boats are capable of such high speeds.

This time last night I couldn’t type as the boat was bouncing around sitting on 26 knots in 30 knots of wind and I was watching us take 40nm a 3 hour sched out of boats…tonight we are doing 3 knots and losing 40nm a sched.

The tension is mounting amongst the crew that all our hard work on the leg will end with us being overtaken at the finishing post, so some hard night hours ahead, trimming the sails and the boat.

Jules Salter – navigator

ERICSSON 3 LEG TWO DAY 15 QFB: received 29.11.08 1600 GMT

”Please don’t die”

They are Magnus Olsson’s words. It feels like he has spelled them out enough times in this race. The weather reports are quite unreliable in this part of the world and it would be nice if the report I heard about the wind dropping as we come closer to the finish turns out to be wrong.

We have gained on the others the last scheds and we have had good, but extremely shifty breeze, which means many sail changes.

When it comes to signs of wilderness, this trip has been boringly calm. Until yesterday, we had only seen fins of a bunch of small whales and some albatrosses in the Southern Ocean. They are fantastic birds with a gracious way of flying. To follow ones track for a couple of minutes really takes an effort. They are flying in between the waves, almost touching the surface and they are using the wind so efficiently that they don’t have to flap their wings more than a couple of times per day. Fantastic.

But I was hoping for more than the amazing birds. I was thinking more of sharks, whales and the never-boring dolphins. So far, we only saw the fins of really small whales and we had close contact with a small fish the other day. First, he was caught on our daggerboard. And when he let go of that, he managed to get stuck on the rudder as well. Not good for us and certainly not good for him. I actually think he snapped in half after a while.

Yesterday was the big moment. A huge whale jumped up in the air about 50 meters to leeward. In Swedish, it’s called a Kaskelott. It’s one of those really big ones with a flat nose and no teeth. It was an amazing moment. The only pity about it was that I didn’t see it. Just three guys in the crew did. And they were ecstatic. I have to figure out a way to never miss those moments. Any ideas?

A tired Gustav Morin – MCM

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