Team Telefónica continued their domination of the Volvo Ocean Race today as they edged out a victory in the Sanya Haitang In-Port Race, narrowly beating PUMA Ocean Racing to claim a maximum six points.
"It was the second in-port victory in four races for Iker Martínez’s men, who have also won all three offshore legs"
It was the second in-port victory in four races for Iker Martínez’s men, who have also won all three offshore legs. Glory in Sanya Bay sees Telefónica extend their lead at the top of the overall standings to 18 points over CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand, who could finish no better than fourth.
"Today the tactics were what made the difference," Martínez said. "We were really in the right place for the upwind legs and the first downwind too. Even if we weren't great at manouevres, we were in the right place and that's what mattered."
PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG took second place with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing claiming the final podium position. After a slow first leg CAMPER pulled back places but could never get back in touch with the leaders.
"I think we did a really good job of it today," said PUMA skipper Ken Read. "In a fleet like this we'll take second every day of the week."
Mike Sanderson’s hometown heroes on Team Sanya fought an incredible battle but were just edged into sixth by Franck Cammas’ Groupama sailing team.
Flat waters and winds gusting up to 20 knots provided perfect conditions for the fourth in-port race of the 2011-12 edition, allowing the teams to put on a spectacular show for the thousands of spectators who turned out to watch the action.
Telefónica commanded the lead from the start, rounding the first mark with a 28-second lead over their rivals before a rare error at the second mark saw Ken Read’s PUMA close the gap to just three seconds.
However nothing could stop Telefónica romping to victory, eventually winning by a margin of 41 seconds.
The overall rankings remain unchanged. Telefónica now lead with 101 points, followed by CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand on 83 and Groupama sailing team on 73. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG have 53, followed by Abu Dhabi on 43 and Team Sanya on 17.
Tomorrow sees the start of the 5,220 nautical mile Leg 4 from Sanya to Auckland at 1400 local time (0600 UTC). The leg start will be streamed live at www.volvooceanrace.com and www.livestream.com/volvooceanrace.
Coverage will start 15 minutes prior to the race start.
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- 4 Feb 2012Telefónica celebrate hat-trick after tight finish
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