The Russians Are Back In The Volvo Ocean Race
A familiar face is on the horizon. Team Russia are on their way to Stockholm with the intention of taking part in the leg 10 sprint to their home port of St Petersburg, Russia.
In what amounts to a race against time for the team, who are currently at sea en route from Gothenburg and expect to be in Stockholm by Tuesday afternoon or evening. The leg 10 start is on Thursday
The team suspended racing in Singapore after leg three as a consequence of insufficient funds, and have since been trying to source funding to resume.
In the meantime, they have largely changed their management and crew – Stig Westergaard has taken over from Andreas Hanakamp as skipper and, along with founder Oleg Zherebtsov, is the only returning member of the sailing team – and they now face a difficult task in being declared eligible to race.
Race Director Jack Lloyd said ”We haven’t seen the boat since Christmas time when they left Singapore so we have no idea of the state of the electronics or the measurement condition of the boat. She just has to comply with the rules, like any other boat. All other boats have to maintain the boat in measurement trim and their crew have to qualify. They just have to go through that process.
“Their old crew has disbanded so probably about eight of them – if they want to take a full crew – have to take a safety course. We have got to do medicals and a little bit of other training, plus we have to get the boat back into measurement trim and get all the electronics done.”