12 yachts crossed the start line of the third leg of the Ocean Globe Race, from Auckland, New Zealand to Punta del Este, Uruguay

The third leg of the Ocean Globe Race is now underway, with just 12 of the 13 yachts left in the race crossing the start line.

Australian team, Explorer failed to make the start due to a faulty fuel injection pump, although the crew on their Swan 57 should sail Tuesday morning.

The Explorer crew were one of the last teams to arrive in Auckland on Leg Two, and therefore, had limited time to prepare for the third leg of the Ocean Globe Race.

With a north-easterly 15-20 knot wind at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron start line, the 12 starting yachts fought for prime position, forcing the French team L’Esprit d’équipe to gybe, breaking batten cars.

Boats jostling at the start of a yacht race

The short start line in front of the New Zealand Yacht Squadron made for a spaghetti junction start. Credit: Marco Ausderau / OGR2023

Later L’Esprit d’équipe tweeted: “A mixed start in terms of team spirit: tight to the bow, forced to gybe and broken batten cars. But we’re not giving up!”

First to cross the line was Triana, seconds ahead of Galiana WithSecure, skippered by Finnish sailor Tapio Lehtinen, who later tweeted: “I was taught as a kid that if you are not over the line early in one start out of seven, you are not trying enough. Today I tried:).”

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Witnessing the start was sailor and artist Sarah-Jane Blake, daughter of the legendary Kiwi sailor, Sir Peter Blake.

“It’s always exciting being on a start line and there’s some breeze out there so it’s going to be great. And I’m sure during the day I’ll be feeling emotional as it brings back memories, it’s amazing to still have the Whitbread connection and that it’s still going so strong. I’m really happy people still want to sail old style – it’s way more adventurous,” she said.

After nearly 24 hours at sea, Pen Duick VI, led by Marie Tabarly, is leading, followed by the current IRC leader, Translated 9, Spirit of Helsinki, and Maiden.

The crew on leg 3 of the OCean Globe Race

The crews met up ahead of the start of Leg 3. OGR2023/Terry Kavanagh

Translated 9, which has won both Leg One and Leg Two, is now sailing with a new co-skipper. Golden Globe Race finisher Simon Curwen, who was navigator for Leg One and Leg Two has replaced Vittorio Malingri following his resignation from the team after he breached the notice of race over sail repair.

There have also been changes for the Maiden crew, with Maryama Seck, who sailed with Neptune, and Capucine Treffot, who sailed with L’Esprit d’Equipe in Leg One and Leg Two moving to the all-female crew for Leg Three.

This resulted in both Neptune and L’Esprit d’Equipe receiving a special dispensation for Leg Three as the teams no longer had a female crew member – a requirement of the race.

Maiden sailing

Maiden is the only boat in the 2023 Ocean Globe Race with an all-female crew. Credit ©The Maiden Factor-Kaia Bint Savage

Capucine Treffot said: “It’s tough being the only woman on board. There is some stuff you can’t share and sometimes you feel really alone. I’d very good friends on the boat, so I’m not missing friends. I’m missing another woman onboard. A mixed crew should mean more than just one woman. It should actually be really mixed.”

Positions of the 2023 Ocean Globe Race fleet – Leg 3: Auckland to Punta del Este at 1200 UTC on 15 January 2024. These positions will change under the IRC rating. Line honours are shown below. 

Pen Duick VI (France)
Translated 9 (Italy)
Spirit of Helsinki (Finland)
Maiden (UK)
Neptune (France)
White Shadow (Spain)
Triana (France)
L’Esprit d’Equipe (France)
Outlaw (Australia)
Evrika (France)
Galiana with Secure (Finland)
Sterna (South Africa)

Yet to start Leg 3
Explorer (Australia)

Godspeed (USA)

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