SOURCE: Volvo Ocean Race
Fleet Heads for Trans-atlantic Trip to Lisbon on Leg 7
With four boats still in close contention for the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 trophy with just three legs remaining, Leg 7 could potentially one of the most critical stages of the 39,000 nautical mile marathon.
With a gentle breeze blowing off Miami's famous South Beach it was Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, winners of Saturday's PORTMIAMI In-Port Race, who took the early lead round the six-mile course which extended as they entered the powerful current of the Gulf Stream.
Despite a light start to the 3,590nm transatlantic leg from Miami to Lisbon, Portugal, the six-strong fleet were preparing to tackle Tropical Storm Alberto, the first of the 2012 hurricane season, lying off the east coast of the United States and holding winds of up to 45 knots at its centre.