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Leg 6 is a 6,100 nautical mile race to Auckland, New Zealand. Six teams will start by crossing the South China Sea to the northern tip of the Philippines. After that, it’s out into the Pacific and a long drag race to the south-east, dodging the many island chains of Polynesia until they reach Auckland.
Pedro Martinez/Volvo Ocean Race
Watch Leg 6 start Tuesday night (10pm EST), 2/6/18 live at the Volvo Ocean Race website (below) and we'll post start highlights here as soon as possible.
The forecast for start time at Hong Kong is for a 12-15 Northeasterly wind, ideal conditions to get the fleet on their way to Auckland. But as the fleet gets into the leg, stronger winds are forecast over the first days.
MAPFRE, the overall race leader, will cross the start line to Auckland with a four-point lead over Dongfeng Race Team. With another Doldrums crossing looming, both skippers see the potential jeopardy in the leg.
The seventh team, Vestas 11th Hour Racing, has announced it will miss Leg 6, following a collision with a non-racing vessel at the end of Leg 4. In a statement, the team said: “The time required for repairs means the team will not be rejoining the race in time for Leg 6 from Hong Kong to Auckland, New Zealand. The shore crew has loaded the yacht onto a freight vessel in Hong Kong for transportation to Auckland.
“The team aims to have repairs completed during the stopover in Auckland, in time for inshore racing and the start of Leg 7 to Itajaí, Brazil, which is scheduled for March 18,” the statement concludes.