On the seventh day of Race 5, GoToBermuda and Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam continue to lead the charge as the fleet begins to converge ahead of rounding the southern tip of Tasmania.

The Visit Sanya China team was full of focus to gain Scoring Gate points

Whilst race points are a long way off being decided, the first bonus points, the scoring gate points, of the Whitsundays, Heart of the Great Barrier Reef race have been announced. Five teams went for the gate, which was positioned approximately 130nm due south of the rhumb line, but only three will add precious bonus points to their overall tallys.

Due to Race 5 being raced on elapsed time, the Scoring Gate results have also been calculated as such and the fastest to reach the gate was Punta del Este in a time of 77 hrs 49 mins and therefore takes the maximum three bonus points. Followed by Visit Sanya, China which crossed in the second fastest elapsed time of 78 hrs 54 min, taking two bonus points and crossing with the third fastest elapsed time and claiming the final bonus point was Zhuhai in 92 hrs 56 mins.

Image: The Zhuhai team celebrates its Scoring Gate bonus point

Punta del Este Skipper, Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez, said: “It is official, we have won the Scoring Gate after a great fight with Visit Sanya, China. We pushed the boats flying our kites in challenging conditions, Visit Sanya was ahead for most of the way and we tried to overtake, first to windward next to leeward, managing in the end to sail at a good speed the shortest distance to the gate. Well done Seumas and Jorge for putting such a fierce opposition. Three welcome points that help our climb to the top position, every little counts!”

The team on board Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam capture dolphins swimming alongside in the Southern Ocean

Narrowly missing out on points Imagine your Korea Skipper, Rob Graham, reflects on the disappointment reporting: “We pushed hard for Scoring Gate points, but Zhuhai got there just ahead of us, and we now know that Punta del Este and Visit Sanya, China have beaten our elapsed time. That's disappointing, but there's no shame in it: we tried our best, and congratulate those teams that managed a little better.”

With the fleet continuing to make good progress towards Tasmania Guy Waites, Skipper of Dare To Lead summerises what is still to come: “For now it's a straight line drag race to the turning mark south of Tasmania, the gains and losses minimal barring any unforeseen hiccups, the real opportunity lies along the east coast as we ascend the relative complexity of weather and the predominantly south flowing East Australian Current. But there is some hope for the climb ahead of us, back eddies spinning off the current that can reverse our fortunes for the better and help propel us north, the gains and or losses could be many?!”

Keep track of the fleet via the Race Viewer and for insights into life on board check out the Skipper Blogs.

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