GIRL Power led the way early on day three of the round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race.
Team SCA – the event’s first all-female crew, skippered by Portsmouth-born Sam Davies – took a surprise lead on the first leg between Alicante and Cape Town after a bold move by navigator Libby Greenhalgh paid dividends.
Team SCA took the risky option of crossing the Strait of Gibraltar via a northern route, while the rest of the fleet sailed closer to Morocco.
‘Everyone except us were going the southerly route through the Strait and for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why,’ said Greenhalgh.
‘We wanted to stay with the fleet but we also wanted to stick with our plan – and our plan has us sailing north.’
The move saw Davies & Co move 21 nautical miles clear of their rivals, who include Warsash racer Ian Walker (Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing). But 20 minutes after reaching the Atlantic, the wind decreased, Team SCA stopped progressing and their competitors started to catch up.
And late into day three, the ladies had dropped to fourth – behind leaders Team Vestas Wind, with Walker still in second.