The German skipper and his crew won the longest stage in the history of the event in Brazil after almost 35 days of racing and a masterful showdown against Holcim – PRB.
The crew of Team Malizia won this Sunday the third leg of The Ocean Race linking Cape Town, South Africa, to Itajaí, Brazil. The boat crossed the finish line overnight from Saturday to Sunday after 34 days, 17 hours, 10 minutes, and 28 seconds to complete a course of 14,714 miles, the longest stage of the 2022-2023 edition. .
«We are still full of energy“said skipper Boris Herrmann on his arrival at the pontoon. “The race was tight and that’s what kept us motivated. It’s a team win and I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved.»
The German sailor can indeed savor this prestigious success. Boris Herrmann and his crew (Will Harris, Rosalin Kuiper, Nico Lunven (FRA) and Antoine Auriol) had discovered a few days after the start that their mast was badly damaged. After considering a return to Cape Town, they finally repaired in the open sea for two days, losing a lot of time.
A duel with Holcim – PRB
This setback had enabled Team Holcim – PRB to take to their heels by hanging on to a depression to claim first place with a lead of nearly 600 miles. Malizia then embarked on a chase with a very uncertain outcome, gradually gaining miles.
As the fleet headed south of New Zealand and the southern depths of the Pacific Ocean, the teams closed within 10 miles of each other and traded first place as that they were along the ice exclusion zone. The intense tussle took its toll on the winning ranks when Rosalin Kuiper was thrown from her bunk and injured her head.
A storm faced Friday
The mano a mano continued: rounding Cape Horn, Team Malizia had a lead of less than 30 miles and won the Roaring 40th trophy in stride. The ascent from South America and the final sprint towards Brazil finally gave rise to a fierce battle between the two leading boats caught in a storm on Friday.
The gusts of wind caused a lot of damage on Holcim – PRB but the leaders were able to get out of the winds blowing at 50 knots with a 60 mile lead. A mattress comfortable enough to ensure a superb victory in front of Holcim – PRB expected on the finish line at midday this Sunday. 11th Hour Racing Team, more than 500 miles behind, should complete the podium ahead of Biotherm (about 150 miles behind third).