Nord Stream Race Fleet Ready for Both Light and Heavy Winds on Leg 2
It has been a patience-testing time for the sailors and the race officer as the Nord Stream Race fleet waits for the weather to deal them a better hand for Leg 2 to Stockholm, but now at least the fleet is under way...

Stockholm/Öland, 28 June 2018 – Leg 2 of the Nord Stream Race is finally underway after a delay of more than 24 hours due to a lack of breeze over the south of Sweden.

At least some light winds arrived and the five ClubSwan 50s got away from the start line at the southern tip of Öland, Sweden's second biggest island, at 13:00hrs. It has been a frustrating time for the crews who had to motor out of Copenhagen on Wednesday morning and spent the day making their way leisurely to the new starting area.

At 211 miles, the shortened course is approximately half of the original scheduled leg from Copenhagen to Stockholm. But with a busy schedule to maintain on this stage race, including taking part in the ÅF Inshore Race in Stockholm this Saturday and the start of the 300-boat ÅF Offshore Race on Sunday, principal race officer Eckart Reinke was forced to make a decision to keep the race rolling.

Nord Stream Race © Anya Semeniouk
Yesterday the sailors entertained themselves with jokes, sea shanties (in the case of the old sea dogs that are among the Finnish crew) and even watching some World Cup football on their mobile phones. Germany, the defending World Champions, being eliminated from the World Cup 2-0 by South Korea - it will go down as one of those 'where were you at the time' moments in Germany history. In the case of Sven-Erik Horsch, the skipper of Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, he will have no problem recalling. "All of the crew watched the match on board," he said. "Obviously we are very sad about the result. But now it is important for us to restore German pride with a leg victory to Stockholm!" The one match the Germans did win at the World Cup was against Sweden, so maybe they will be able to do it again in Swedish waters.

For the time being the Russian team, Lord of the Sail - Asia, leads the overall standings and this leg will be an interesting study of how well the crews adapt to changing conditions. The fleet is expected to moderate southerly breezes today as they fly their gennakers towards Stockholm, where temperatures are close to 30 degrees celsius. However, at some point overnight there will be a big and sudden turnaround where a colder, stronger wind kicks in from the north. Today's sailing will feel Mediterranean, but tomorrow's could feel unmistakably Baltic – chillier and more challenging, with big waves standing between the fleet and the final approach to Sweden's capital city.

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