11th Hour Racing Team finishes Leg 2 of The Ocean Race in third position.
The 6,500 nautical mile leg from Mindelo, Cabo Verde to Cape Town, South Africa took the crews 17 days, 20 hours, 35 minutes, and 40 seconds.
Focus is now on two weeks of boat refit and preparation before departure on the longest leg in The Ocean Race history.
Restart on Sunday, February 26, destination Itajaí, Brazil.
Sunday, February 12, 2023, Cape Town, South Africa
11th Hour Racing Team has finished Leg 2 of The Ocean Race 2022-23 in third place. The only US entry in the five-boat IMOCA fleet completed the 6,514.01 nautical mile [7,565 mile or 12,175 kilometer] course from Mindelo, Cabo Verde, to Cape Town South Africa, in 17 days, 20 hours, 35 minutes, and 40 seconds.
It was an intense battle for the podium over the final stage of the race, with six lead changes in the last 24-hours, as the crews battled for the finish line. In the end, it was a French one-two of Holcim-PRB followed by Biotherm. 11th Hour Racing Team completed the podium, crossing the finish line at 13:35:40 UTC (15:35:40 local), just 25 minutes off the winning time.
Charlie Enright’s crew for this second leg was navigator Simon Fisher (GBR), Trimmers Jack Bouttell (AUS/GBR) and Justine Mettraux (SUI), and Amory Ross (USA) as Media Crew Member.
On arrival at the dock, skipper Enright said, “We are a little disappointed with a third place after 17 days, but the bigger picture to take home is that we sailed the boat fast and well, and I think that bodes well for the future. This race is a marathon and not a sprint, and we have a big doubler pointer coming up with Leg 3 through the Southern Ocean.
“We are very proud of how we sailed. We did a great job onboard, but of course, there are still things we can learn. We have a very objective and pragmatic group, and we will take from it what we can, and be better for it moving forward.
“The leaderboard doesn’t reflect what we would like it to reflect, certainly in terms of how we have sailed, but we are only 20% into the race. If we sail the boat as we have in the last leg from now until July, relative to the competition, we’ll be fine. This is an opportunity for resilience.”
Navigator Simon Fisher, a six-time veteran of this race, said, “The last 24-hours have been pretty tough! We always had the ambition to win this leg and were always fighting at the front. So to end up third is a difficult pill to swallow. But the positive thing is that we were consistently the boat that was fighting at the front for the entire leg, we sailed very well, and we never felt out of touch.
“There is a bit of luck in sailing so that is something we can’t forget. So while disappointing, and it stings a little today, we should probably not take it too much to heart – onwards and upwards from here.”
Jack Bouttell shared what life had been like onboard in the final hours of the race. “It has been pretty intense, relentless, and felt never-ending! Especially in those sorts of conditions where it was really unstable, and there was no clear route to sail. From 300 miles to the finish, we were all within a couple of miles of each other and the whole way to the finish it was light winds, clouds, and shifts. We were in a really good place last night, but we found ourselves on the wrong side of a few clouds, and it put us in a worse position, and that was it …
“Overall we were the most consistent boat in terms of speed and where we placed ourselves, and we have also found the strengths and weaknesses of the rest of the fleet. There’s plenty of work to do, and it’s a long way to go!”
Trimmer Justine Mettraux, a seasoned offshore solo, and short-handed sailor, commented, “When you sail a leg from Cape Verde to South Africa, for sure you pass through lots of different weather systems. It was mainly a light wind leg. we had a little bit of strong downwind conditions, but not much, so it was an easy leg for life onboard.
“And because of the conditions being light there is always a back and forth between the teams, and we can see that with how close the boats finished together! The boats that were far behind had the opportunity to come back with the wind, but that’s all part of the game. It’s not easy, but that’s the way it goes.“
11th Hour Racing Team’s IMOCA, Mālama, along with the other four boats, will be lifted out of the water for an intense period of work by the teams’ shore crews before build-up week in preparation for the restart of the race on Sunday, February 26, 2023.
Charlie Enright (USA) – Skipper
Simon Fisher (GBR) – Navigator
Jack Bouttell (AUS/GBR) – Trimmer
Justine Mettraux (SUI) – Trimmer
Amory Ross (USA) – Media Crew Member
The Ocean Race 2022-23 Route:
Leg 1: Alicante, Spain to Mindelo, Cabo Verde
Leg 2: Cabo Verde to Cape Town, South Africa
Leg 3: Cape Town, South Africa to Itajaí, Brazil
Leg 4: Itajaī, Brazil, to Newport, Rhode Island
Leg 5: Newport, Rhode Island to Aarhus, Denmark
Leg 6: Aarhus, Denmark to The Hague, The Netherlands (with a flyby past Kiel, Germany)
Leg 7: The Hague, The Netherlands to Genoa, Italy
Like Newport Buzz? We depend on the generosity of readers like you who support us, to help with our mission to keep you informed and entertained with local, independent news and content. We truly appreciate your trust and support!