Just two days into the leg from Newport, USA, to Cardiff, Wales, and already the speeds are up across the fleet. First-placed karriv was making more than 25 knots of boat speed in 24 knots of wind on Wednesday, having already sailed almost 1,200 miles.
Just under five miles behind, fellow countryman Salomon was chasing hard, with France’s SpiritSailing in third, six miles behind the leader. The leading players have already drawn level with Newfoundland, the island off the east coast of Canada, as the follow the Great Circle Route.
The classic routing sees sailors head high up into the North Atlantic looking to hook onto an easterly-moving depression - and hold onto it as long as possible.
Certainly in the opening two days of Leg 9 the rich have gotten richer, with a split of more than 55 miles opening up across the top 50 players already. Not only is Leg 9 the third to last leg of the Volvo Ocean Race, it is also vital to the overall result of the game.
The game is scored on the best six legs, and overall it’s Swedish player Tessa94 that tops the overall leaderboard. But right behind him in second is Sideshow, the winner of the 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race game, followed closely by Marcusbelgicus in third. All three players have proven themselves titans of the Volvo Ocean Race game - and without doubt they’ll all be looking to win Leg 9.
Although the leg is in full swing it’s not too late to join in - just go to www.volvooceanrace.com/game to sign up and experience the Leg 9 action!