SOURCE: Volvo Ocean Race
New Video Available - Massive & Enthusiastic Crowds in Ireland Bid Farewell to Volvo Ocean Race Fleet
As the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 officially comes to a close this weekend, tens of thousands of spectators have visited the Volvo Ocean Race Village daily this week and packed Galway Harbour and the Irish coastline today to cheer on the fleet one final time.
While French-entry Groupama sailing team were celebrating overall victory in the eight-month round-the-world race, they were denied what would have been a unique offshore, inshore double as PUMA held on for the win they needed to capture the inshore series trophy.
PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG, wearing Ireland rugby shirts, scored six points for the win, taking their in-port total to 45 points and breaking the tie with CAMPER at the top of the inshore rankings.
CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand finished second to place second in the 10-race inshore series with 44 points. Long-time overall leaders in this 2011-12 race Telefónica finished third Saturday, followed by Groupama in fourth.
For Groupama, the day provided a final coronation for their come-from-behind overall victory in this 11th edition of the race with a public prize giving on Saturday featuring the presentation of the race trophy to a French team for the first time since 1986.
Telefónica led the Volvo Ocean Race from November through early June before French skipper Franck Cammas and his crew snatched the lead in early June in Lisbon – a lead they never relinquished.
Thousands of fans on board hundreds of spectator boats watched on as the fleet tussled for the final time on the 8.2 nautical mile inshore course in overcast and wet conditions. They weren't disappointed as the fleet battled throughout in the final sail for the Volvo Open 70 boats before the race moves to a new 65-foot one-boat design for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.