Abu Dhabi and CAMPER are racing the clock as their shore crews forego sleep in a bid to re-launch their campaigns in time for valuable scoring opportunities.
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing bowman Wade Morgan said his team expected to start shipping their damaged yacht Azzam from Chile to Itajaí on Saturday, April 7, arriving around April 16, in time for the Itajai In-Port Race.
The team retired from Leg 5 at 1000 UTC on April 2 after skipper Ian Walker conceded that damage to the mid-section of the port side of Azzam sustained in the Southern Ocean put the boat and team in jeopardy.
Since arriving at the Chilean port of Puerto Montt at 1200 UTC on April 4 the shore crew were flung into action in a bid to ensure Azzam would be ship-shape for the Itajaí In-Port Race on April 21.
“It’s a sizeable portion of the boat, it’s nearly three, four metres long, 600 to 700 millimeters wide, so it’s going to entail cutting the inside skin off and the core that’s failed,’’ Morgan said.
“We’ve got new core being made, it’s thermo core with the correct shape, we’ll stick that in and reconstitute the inside skin on top.
“There will be some work on the starboard side as well. It hasn’t failed, but there are two sides to the boat so we need to be sure it can’t happen on that side as well. They’ll be busy days for the boys, but we’ll be ready to go for the in-port race.”
CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand are also on track to make a quick return to the water after suspending racing to fix structural damage at Puerto Montt at 0130 UTC on Tuesday.
Shore manager Neil Cox yesterday said the final parts were being glued into place as part of a “24-hour laminating fiesta”. He was hopeful the team could have the glue and laminate set using heat and pressure treatment later today.
Skipper Chris Nicholson said his shore crew were focused on producing quality work in a timely fashion to ensure the sailors’ safety at sea.
“With our repairs there’s no cutting corners,’’ he said. “They have to be 100 per cent before we leave and the guys are working as hard as they can. We couldn’t fit any more people on the job. Our schedule is set in stone.”
CAMPER are expected to resume racing the remaining 3,000 nautical miles to Itajaí at some stage this weekend. They are guaranteed at least 15 points for completing the leg following the retirement of Team Sanya and Abu Dhabi.
- 17 Apr 2012Excitement building as CAMPER approach the final 50 miles
- 13 Apr 2012The big debate - skippers comment on Leg 5 attrition
- 27 Mar 2012Nicholson pins faith on his resourceful shore team
- 20 Mar 2012Battered and bruised in full-blown ocean battle
- 19 Mar 2012Blasting towards the Roaring Forties
- 17 Feb 2012CAMPER triumph as Telefónica sit out Pro-Am