Tag Archive | "Equipo Telefonica"

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It’s time to go back to Alicante

Posted on 30 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

The 2008-9 Volvo Ocean Race has just finished and one by one the teams that took part in it are slowly winding down. Today it was the turn of Telefonica’s two boats, the Blue and the Black, to start their trip back home.

The two Spanish yachts set sail from the Russian city of St Petersburg this morning and headed towards Spain. Before reaching their base in Alicante they will make a number of stopovers in various Spanish ports for a series of marketing and hospitality events but also give the local crowds the opportunity to cheer for the team that achieved the best ever Spanish result in the history of the Volvo Ocean Race.

Telefonica Blue and Black will first stop in Bilbao in 10 days and after rounding the Iberian peninsula they are expected to moor in their base on the 29th of July. Although there hasn’t been any formal announcement yet, it is believed that Telefonica will most probably be one of the two Spanish entries in the 2011-12 edition of the round-the-world race.

The two Telefonica boats start their trip back home. St Petersburg, 30 June 2009. Photo copyright Maria Muiña / Equipo Telefonica

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Telefonica Black win closing leg of 2008-9 Volvo Ocean Race

Posted on 27 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Volvo Ocean Race] It was an historic moment tonight in St Petersburg, Russia, when as the White Night turned to dawn the Volvo Ocean Race fleet, led by Telefónica Black in a thrilling climax, crossed the tenth and final finish line of this nine-month, 37,000 nm race around the world.

Spanish skipper, Fernando Echávarri said, “It’s a prize for all the crew and all the shore crew. We have been trying to do it in all the legs but couldn’t; this was our last chance. We had a nice battle with PUMA in the last 100 miles. We are really happy.

“It has been really difficult. We prepared the boat for light conditions and the first 150 miles we had more wind than expected so we suffered a lot. Then it got lighter and we got faster. We have been fighting with PUMA, Telefónica Blue and Ericsson 3 for the last 250 miles. It has been really close. It has been like a match race. I don’t know how many tacks we have done! It is a great way to finish the Volvo Ocean Race. I am really proud of everyone in the group. They have done an excellent job.”

Telefonica Black, skippered by Fernando Echavarri finish first on leg 10 in St Petersburg, crossing the line at 00:41:25 GMT, a mere 20 seconds ahead of PUMA. St Petersburg, 27 June 2009. Photo copyright Dave Kneale / Volvo Ocean Race

Victory for Telefónica Black was hard-fought and a match race developed with PUMA, who had led the fleet for the majority of this 400-mile sprint from Stockholm. At just after midnight GMT and while on the additional triangle added to lengthen the course, Telefónica Black gained a small advantage, which translated into a two and a half boat length win, denying PUMA a second leg win in a row. However, with a total of 105.5 points, PUMA takes second place overall.

PUMA skipper Kenny Read said: “Congratulations to all those guys, they have worked very hard for their first leg win. We will take our second and our second overall. You know what? We just sailed around the world. I guess I said a thousand times that we know no other way but to make it hard for ourselves. It’s a shame, because we usually win these close battles and today we didn’t.

“The big picture is we finished this race, everyone is safe and the boat has been spectacular. We flew the flag well for Volvo and I think we flew the flag well for PUMA. We have everything to be proud of. Relief is the right word. Right now, it is relief and, as always, we are a pretty tired group onboard. Let the celebrations begin because all the group deserves it.”

Telefónica Blue (Bouwe Bekking/NED) filled the third spot both on leg 10 and overall, to close the team’s account on 98 points.

Bekking said on finishing: “We’re tired and hungry! It has been full on. Lots of tacking. It was a beautiful leg in that it was sunny. But we have been a bit unlucky. That’s how it goes. But well done to the Telefónica Black boys, they deserved to win. They had a superb leg. Good for them. We were all very close. It is a very nice feeling to have finished and got all the boys home safely. We had a podium finish which is nice as well.”

Fourth place finishers tonight and fourth overall with 78.5 points was Ericsson 3 and Swedish skipper, Magnus Olsson was exhausted. “I feel so tired I cannot say anything! Everybody is happy because they have sailed around the world, but they are also very tired. After a day or two we can say more intelligent things. You always want to do well in every leg, but this was special because it was the short one and the last one. We were up there so we are happy, but we couldn’t keep up until the finish. They beat us fair and square.”

Runaway overall leaders, with a final tally of 114.5 points and nine points clear of PUMA, Torben Grael and his 10 crew of Ericsson 4 finished this leg in fifth place. In an interview with Guy Swindells, skipper Torben Grael, who raced every offshore leg with the same crew, was reflective in his comments as overall victory in the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09 finally became a reality.

“I think it is a mixed feeling because we know this is the end of the story for the project. It’s a funny feeling because some of these guys you have never met before and you become like brothers. Now we go our own ways and it’s a strange feeling.

“On the other hand it has been a long race. It was a very long race around the world. We are completely drained and tired so I think everyone is looking forward to a nice rest. We have had a wonderful time. We enjoyed our training time in Lanzarote and the race as well. We have had our ups and downs, but it has been fun. After we won, it was a bit of a relaxing leg. It has been so intense and so consuming so I think it is normal that after you achieve your goals you relax. I am very glad for Telefónica Black and Fernando and his guys for winning this last leg.”

Green Dragon kept her slender lead over Delta Lloyd to finish the leg in sixth place, and fifth overall with 67 points.

To conclude the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09, Delta Lloyd, the only generation one Volvo Open 70 to compete in the race, finished shortly after Green Dragon to finish the race on a total of 41.5 points.

Skipper Roberto Bermúdez said: “We made a good job and everyone enjoyed their time. Everyone is happy and that is the most important thing. It started well but then there was some fighting with the Dragons. They did a fantastic job with the manoeuvres and I say congratulations to them for that. It has been fun.”

Ian Walker, skipper of Green Dragon, should have the last word:

“It is a privilege to sail in this fantastic race and I am very proud to have had the chance. I am proud of every member of our team, and I am proud of what we have achieved together. We promised to give it everything and to never, ever give up and that is exactly what we have done. We haven’t won this race, but we have won many battles and achieved more than many dreamed possible. It has been a very special year.”

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Telefonica Blue reaches Stockholm and finishes leg 9 of VOR

Posted on 19 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

Finally, we have finished, but not easy. Five miles out, absolutely no breeze for a couple of minutes.

No cheers, no handshakes, as soon we crossed the line. We know we had an absolute shocker and have given a better podium place away. On personal note, this was the leg I have been looking forward to so much: sailing through home waters, going around a lot of corners, a leg, which suited us well on paper, but the opposite, happened.

Now we will focus on the inshore, where we have the best track record by far, and then it will sweet to finish on top in St Petersburg.

We have picked up some family members, who will sail with us through this nice area back into Stockholm; I know they will enjoy it.


Bouwe Bekking – skipper

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Video:Telefonica Blue makes final repairs and sails to Stockholm

Posted on 18 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

Telefonica Blue makes final repairs and then sails off to Stockholm. Marstrand, 17 June 2009. Video copyright Equipo Telefonica

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Telefonica Blue resume racing and are en route to Stockholm.

Posted on 17 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Volvo Ocean Race] The team informed the Volvo Ocean Race duty officers they were continuing their leg at 19:16 GMT. On Sunday, Telefonica Blue ran hard around shortly after the start of the race, and found themselves stuck on a rock just outside Marstrand.

It took great effort to free the boat and an even bigger push by the shore crew to repair the damage, as media crew member Gabriele Olivo reports this evening:

“Back on the water.

“After just two and a half days after the hit the rock, we are finally back on the water. The repair has been completed in an extraordinary short time and the shore crew did a fantastic job. There are not enough words or beers that we can buy to compensate the efforts that they made. Thanks guys.

“And thanks to the Ericsson Racing Team for letting us use their work container, it has been very handy. Thanks to the people that have been helping us, thanks to the lady that works in the shop just next to where we hauled the boat for preparing the coffee twice a day and giving it to us as a present… Thank you from all the crew.

“Stockholm here we come.”

Telefonica Blue resumes racing and heads to Stockholm. Marstrand, 17 June 2009. Photo copyright Gabriele Olivo / Equipo Telefonica

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Video: Intense moments aboard Telefonica Blue

Posted on 15 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

Intense moments aboard Telefonica Blue after hitting a rock. Marstrand, 14 June 2009. Video copyright Equipo Telefonica

Telefonica Blue undergoing repairs. Marstrand, 15 June 2009. Video copyright Miraflorez007

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Telefonica Blue under repair, hopes to sail on Wednesday

Posted on 15 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

While the rest of the of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet has already sailed approximately 400 of the 525 miles that separate Marstrand from Stockholm, a shore crew of 20 people are working relentlessly on repairing the damage Telefonica Blue suffered after hitting a rock in yesterday’s race. The aim of the Spanish team is to be able to finish by Wednesday and then set sail for Stockholm, hoping to pocket the points of leg 9 and take part in the in-port race.

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Video: Telefonica Blue hits a rock after the start of VOR leg 9

Posted on 14 June 2009 by Valencia Sailing

Telefonica Blue hits a rock. Marstrand, 14 July 2009. Video copyright Volvo Ocean Race

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