PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG completed the first stage of Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 from Sanya, China, to Auckland, New Zealand, on Sunday, Feb. 19.

Leg 4 resumes at 07:00 local/23:00 UTC

SANYA, CHINA (February 19, 2012) – PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG completed the first stage of Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 from Sanya, China, to Auckland, New Zealand, on Sunday, Feb. 19. PUMA finished with a time of 4:39.17 as the final team to cross the line on the 43.2 nautical mile “Buddha course.” Racing will resume at 07:00 local/23:00 UTC tomorrow when Team Telefónica, the leaders into Sanya, starts the second stage, and PUMA’s Mar Mostro departs at 07:39.17 local/23:39.17 UTC.

“After rounding the Buddha mark and heading back towards Sanya, with two thirds of the race completed, we had approximately a mile and a half lead,” said skipper Ken Read. “To be honest, up until then we sailed fantastically - Kelvin did a nice job on both beats inshore, like yesterday. We saw a breeze transition line happening in front of us, we were totally prepared, then hit a hole, changed sails and literally sat there for an hour and a half while the entire fleet sailed around us. We knew there was a transition, but it turned into a vacuum. It’s hard enough in this fleet, now everyone has about a 35-minute advantage. That’s not perfect, but we’ll deal with it. I have to admit, it’s a very frustrating way to start a leg. We’ll now regroup and we have the rest of the leg to Auckland to gain back miles.”

PUMA’s Mar Mostro won the start and quickly moved into the front as the crew sailed strong up the first windward beat. The team held the position, extending their lead at every mark around the in-port triangle to round the sixth mark in the loop 1.06 ahead of CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand. The fleet headed on to Mark 7 at the giant Buddha statue where PUMA had stretched their lead substantially. Shortly after rounding the mark, light winds in the transition slowed PUMA and the trailing boats literally sailed around them.

Leg 4 from Sanya to Auckland was split into two stages due to a tropical cyclone with expected 6-11 meter waves in the South China Sea. Today’s “Buddha course” marked the first stage as the fleet sailed to the Buddha statue at the Sanya Nanshan Temple and back to the Sanya start line, including the scheduled in-port triangle off the start. The fleet will now re-start on Monday with a staggered departure on the second stage of Leg 4 in the order they finished Stage 1 of the leg. The continuation of the Leg 4 journey will take the fleet approximately 5,220 nautical miles into Auckland.

PUMA sits in fourth place in the overall standings with 53 total points. Telefónica holds onto the top spot on the leaderboard with 101 points.

The Volvo Ocean Race started on November 5 in Alicante, and the fleet is traveling 39,000 nautical miles through 10 ports, finishing in Galway, Ireland, in July 2012. 

The PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG team is once again under the leadership of Read (Newport, Rhode Island, United States). Collectively, the crew has won the Around the World Race six times. The core includes: Tom Addis, Navigator (Sydney, Australia); Ryan Godfrey, Pitman (Adelaide, Australia); Kelvin Harrap, Helmsman, Inshore Tactician (Napier, New Zealand); Brad Jackson, Design Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Rome Kirby, Trimmer & Driver (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Michael “Michi” Müller, Bowman (Kiel, Germany); Tony Mutter, Aerodynamics Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Casey Smith, Systems Manager & Bowman (Brisbane, Australia); Jonathan “Jono” Swain, Helmsman & Trimmer (Durban, South Africa); Amory Ross, Media Crew Member (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Kimo Worthington, General Manager (Portsmouth, Rhode Island, United States); and Tim Hacket, Shore Team Manager (Sydney, Australia).  


No. 235: PUMA's Mar Mostro prepares to round the race mark off of the Buddha statue in first place. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Sanya, China to Auckland, New Zealand. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)


Watch coverage of PUMA’s Leg 4, Stage 1 start HERE


Leg 4, Stage 1 


1 Team Telefónica 07:00.00

2 Groupama Sailing Team 07:02.34

3 Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing 07:03.36

4 Team Sanya 07:07.32

5 CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand 07:09.13

6 PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG 07:39.17

Overall standings:


1 Team Telefónica 101

2 CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand 83

3 Groupama Sailing Team 73

4 PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG 53

5 Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing 43

6 Team Sanya 17

PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG scoring:


2 Alicante In-Port Race 5 5

-- Leg 1* -- 5

3 Cape Town In-Port Race 4 9

3 Leg 2, Stage 1 16 25

4 Leg 2, Stage 2 (3rd in Leg 2 overall) 3 28

4 Abu Dhabi In-Port Race 3 31

2 Leg 3, Stage 1 5 36

4 Leg 3, Stage 2 12 48

2 Sanya In-Port Race 5 53

* Retired from leg