Holcim-PRB back in the water and aiming to race on the In-Port in Newport
This morning, a new mast was put on the monohull. This is great news for general ranking’s leaders who see the horizon clearing for their participation in the Leg 5 of The Ocean Race.
After its masting, Holcim-PRB was moored in Fort Adams Bay, not far from the other competitors (Guyot Environnement, also victim of a dismasting, will not be able to be on the starting line) who will set off on Sunday for a transatlantic race between the United States and Aarhus in Denmark. For Kevin Escoffier and the whole team, the challenge is about to be met:
“The arrival of the boat in Newport is the second biggest step after the arrival of the mast. But it's far from over. We'll have to adjust the sails, the rigging, all the bits and pieces. But having the boat here, on time and even a little bit earlier, is a huge positive point. We are continuing our journey towards our main objective, which is the start of this Leg 5 on May 21st.”
For Loïc Féquet, technical director, being able to look ahead to the next stage of the race is a great success, achieved collectively:
“The whole team has been mobilized since the dismasting, really everyone! We had to get organized very quickly to deal with this mishap. We had to make a lot of decisions in a few days. We made it! We are not yet at the start of the Leg but there is a good chance that we will be there.”
Joined in the United States a few days ago by his teammates Abby Ehler, Sam Goodchild and Charles Caudrelier, Kevin Escoffier can look forward to the four days that separate him from the start of the Leg 5. He remains focused and has put back in place the routines that allowed the team to prepare successfully for the previous legs. It’s about recreating a group, thinking about performance and getting back into race mode after several weeks of thinking only about logistics and technical aspects...
“It was not easy to stay in the race. It wasn't easy to stay focused on performance until today. I had to impose it on myself. The best way to do that is to get back into the routine: sports sessions with the crew, weather briefings, etc. You have to get back into the race.”
Surrounded for this Leg that counts double by three highly experienced sailors, including the skipper of Maxi Edmond de Rothschild and the last winner of The Ocean Race, Kevin Escoffier knows that everything is still possible before the finish in Genoa. Over the next 3,500 miles on the Atlantic, he will also be fighting for the technical team, which has done an incredible amount of work over the past few days and has also been supporting the project for many months. He salutes with fervor the investment of all the men and women who have worked tirelessly to enable the Holcim-PRB crew to pursue their dream of victory in the round-the-world race.
“I particularly like The Ocean Race because it is a race where team spirit is very strong. At sea of course but also on land. Our technicians have all reacted in an extremely positive way after the dismasting with the only wish that we be at the start this Sunday. Every mile we sail to Aarhus will be to thank them and make them proud of this collective adventure. Without them, we could not hope to continue the race in the best possible conditions. And I really want to thank everyone for the energy invested.”
A short race in the bay of Newport which will allow to validate all the adjustments of Holcim-PRB and which will sign the return to the competition of the Swiss boat. Indeed, the In-Port ranking will be used to decide between the crews in case of a tie in Genoa.
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