VolvoOceanRace Teams enjoy a welcome Christmas Holiday in Melbourne. However soon the rest is over and a New Leg 4, from Melbourne to Hong Kong, will start on Tuesday 2nd January in the NewYear at 03:00 UTC or 1400 local.
|VOR Leg 4 Melbourne - Hong Kong|
Different from Leg 3 with steady Lows pushing the Boats from West to East in cold conditions, this Leg 4 will have a lot and I mean a lot of surprises but for sure will bring higher Temperatures!
Starting from Melbourne they will most likely sail along the SE coast of Australia towards the Coral sea. This region can bring wind calms, but also depressions and on top of that the Coral sea has some shallows from the coral islands.
Cyclones might be the biggest surprises and this season those Cyclones are very active as the Philippines is suffering a lot . Escaping this and sailing pass and alongside many land masses on the Solomon islands the Trade winds will be welcomed . Than the Doldrum will be waiting for them, around the Equator. These Doldrums could be a lot nastier than the easy ones, the fleet encountered in the Atlantic.
Once through the Doldrums the Easterly Trade winds will bring a welcome nice fast sailing towards the NE monsoon. That monsoon is feared by the fleet, as some versions have seen many boat damages in heavy wind and sea conditions. But, these NE winds are predicted to have a fast approach to HongKong in NW direction.
As normal, I expect a life broadcasting of the starters circuit. I have not seen the map for the circuit yet, but that will be shown here asap it is available.
Here is a map for the start parcours in Melbourne