em>OneDLL, the ‘big blue boat’ beat all expectations with a very fast finish in the closing stages of the shortened Race 9.1, knocking Mission Performance off its provisional podium position, beating its elapsed time by one hour 26 minutes.
The team crossed the revised finish line at the Shanghai waypoint with an elapsed time of 5 days 16 hours 54 minutes. It will now make best speed to Qingdao under motor sail.
Skipper Olly Cotterell said: "This race has been particularly challenging for OneDLL. We were tested in many ways as a team, in tests not just confined to the races course and I am exceedingly proud of how the team pulled together. All crew members stepped up and pulled together not only to keep the yacht going fast but in support of one another.
"After diverting to Kota Kinabalu and towing PSP Logistics, we arrived late at the race course. As a result of circumstance we set from the outset to sail our own race and I believe that the Race Viewer did show that we sailed a tactically different race. We were fortunate with the weather, we often perform well in challenging upwind conditions. As always the hard work, determination and perseverance of the crew which enabled us to maintain high boat speeds was the backbone of our success. A good run utilising favourable current and tacking on wind shifts to maximise VMG (Velocity made good) meant that we were fast up the Strait of Taiwan.
"After the Strait we were waiting for a favourable wind shift, one that would enable us to utilise our kite. I took a bit of a risk and did not travel as far east to ensure a good northerly tack but instead relied on the fact that the shift would come. This saved unnecessary mileage but if the shift came late, or if the shift was not as big as forecast, it would have lead to a very bad tack. We would have had negative VMG and added a lot of miles. As it was the shift happened close to how I thought it would pan out.
"The podium was nearly scuppered by the notorious Chinese fishing fleet in the waning hours. A lot of gybes and manoeuvring in the dark had to occur to avoid nets and trawlers, light sabres were rattled and blasts of the horn exchanged. Once again our success in this race finds itself birthed from the hard work and preparation laid down by the crew."
All results remain provisional. The official verified leader table for Race 9.1, and updated overall standings, will be published on Friday 14 March.
OneDLL is currently expected to arrive into the Olympic Sailing Center in Qingdao on Thursday morning 13 March local time. The latest ETAs are continually updated here
All boats have now finished racing. Jamaica Get All Right and PSP Logistics retired from the race.
To view the remaining yachts’ progress and provisional leader board click here (Please note that the Distance to Finish is being calculated on the Yellow Brick tracker to the Shanghai waypoint and not Qingdao)