Further damage to their main beam – already repaired once in Cape Town – has forced Team Adventure skipper Cam Lewis to arrange yet another stop, this time in Wellington
While Grant Dalton’sClub Med- currently 800 miles east of the River Plate delta – charges north-northeast at 16 knots, extending his 1,022 mile lead over Loick Peyron’s second-placedInnovation Explorer, third placedTeam Adventureis quite literally an ocean away – 4,818 miles as of 1100 GMT this morning – and pitstopped in Wellington, New Zealand for repairs to a new patch of delamination on the underside of the forward beam.
The American maxicat had been struggling to hit double figures speed-wise ever since entering the Australian Bight and never looked like making any impression on the two leaders. Skipper Cam Lewis’ decision to stop means he and his crew of nine are obliged to stay in Wellington for at least 60 hours – the minimum penalty for a second stop as decreed by the Race committee.
“We have made careful examinations of the interior structure of the crossbeam and there is no sign of any problem inside with the repairs and modifications made in Cape Town,” said Lewis.
“However the exterior skin of the crossbeam has peeled away significantly over a two-metre square area repair area where it is constantly blasted by waves. While the beam is sound, we have no alternative but to restore the exterior skin integrity. We will also carefully survey the boat for any other potential problems at the same time.”
This should allow Roman Paszke’s Polish maxicatWarta Polpharma(formerlyJet Services VandExplorer) to make up the 700 mile deficit and emerge from the Cook Strait with a decent lead over the strickenTeam Adventure.
Unfortunately, from his position 850 miles behindWarta, Tony Bullimore’sTeam Legato(formerlyFormule TAGandENZA) is a little too far off the pace to benefit from the American pitstop.