Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Volvo Ocean Race : Team SCA Finish First Transatlantic

Team SCA. Image copyright Team SCA.

by Vicky Low

The all-female crew of Team SCA marked a milestone in their campaign and arrived to a rousing welcome on a chilly night in Newport, R.I.

Hugs, pats and backslaps were the order of the moment as the all-female crew of Team SCA marked a milestone in their campaign for the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race and arrived to a rousing welcome on a chilly night in Newport, R.I., which will host the sixth stopover of the race in approximately one year.

Team SCA. Image copyright Team SCA.
The headlights of cars flashed along the shoreline and a hearty flotilla that included family members and local race fans greeted the sun and wind burned sailors as the Volvo Ocean 65 ghosted into town, partially illuminated by a first quarter moon. More than 150 people were waiting dockside at the Newport Shipyard as the crew pulled the 65-footer into its slip.
Sally, you’re mom and dad are here,” came the words over the bullhorn, directed towards helmsperson Sally Barkow. They say hi.”

That was pretty cool,” said Barkow, the one-time U.S. Olympian for who the passage is her longest voyage offshore.

Team SCA. Image copyright Team SCA.

Brouwer said that the boat and crew held up well despite a wide variety of conditions. A pumping downwind ride out of Lanzarote that drained the sailors to the bone followed by some “champagne sailing” conditions, reaching along and laying down miles.
In the western Atlantic they were forced to contend with midnight thunderstorms of 45 knots and wild windshifts. Then there was a horrible seaway as the crew navigated around the Gulf Stream.
We’re a team, the jump is that we all worked well together and did that for a long period of time,” said Sam Davies, This leg was about getting here in one piece and learning. On the next leg we hope to push the boat and ourselves a bit more.”

Team SCA dockside in Newport. Image copyright Team SCA.

Team SCA departs next Thursday, May 15, on a return passage to Lanzarote
It was a pretty awesome trip,” said Barkow. It was full on at moments and relaxing at other moments, and it was really focused. It was cool to have the team together and working hard.”
One of the cool things about this race is that you have that responsibility for each other. You slow the boat down when people go on the foredeck. You have to be careful and responsible and look out for each other, it’s another element of team work that some other aspects of sailing don’t have,” said Barkow.

Team SCA. Image copyright Team SCA.

While Barkow’s parents were doing their best to embarrass their daughter, all Carolijn Brouwer could hear was her 3-year-old son Kyle yelling “Mummy!” The two-week voyage was Brouwer’s first extended time away from her son, and they were both anxious to see each other.
It’s a moment you look forward to,” said Brouwer. It makes you sail the boat faster, because you know he’s going to be on the dock when you arrive. Then you hear him shouting mummy and it’s a great moment, one you’ll never forget.”