11th Hour Racing Team is now firmly at the top of The Ocean Race In-Port Race leaderboard after winning the Itajaí In-Port Race today.

It was a flawless performance from the team as they timed their approach to the leeward end of the start line perfectly in the light conditions resulting in a strong start that allowed them to dominate the two-lap race course from start to finish.

Watch the replay of the Itajaí In-Port Race here

“We did a really fantastic job staying flexible at the start,” explained Francesca Clapcich, the Trimmer onboard 11th Hour Racing Team. “We had 8-10 knots of breeze and tricky weather conditions, which wasn’t quite what we expected. But ultimately, by remaining flexible and through good communication, we managed to stick to our final call on what the sail plan should be and kept it clean and simple.

“It’s the kind of mentality and communication that we need to keep the momentum going for the next 20 days.”

Not usually one for big celebrations on camera, Charlie stepped on the dock and dived straight into embracing the rest of the team, waiting to welcome the crew ashore.

“You know what, it does feel good,” said Charlie, surrounded by his wider shore team, by Itajaí Marina. “We can’t ignore the pressure, we’re at an inflection point in the race, the eleventh hour if you will,” he smiled wryly. “If that performance is indicative of what’s to come – and I believe it is – then that’s great. Today’s result is a good starting point for a leg home into Newport, which means a lot to all of us at 11th Hour Racing Team.”

After a tough, 37 day, 20 hour leg through the Southern Ocean with multiple onboard issues, the whole team has been working tirelessly behind the scenes to make repairs and get the boat ready for the upcoming leg.

“Are we where we want to be on the leaderboard?” asked Charlie. “Absolutely not. But do I think we have what it takes as a team? Yes, I do.

“The assumption is that a lot of the issues are tangible and technical, and that’s true to a certain extent, but there’s also the psychological side of things, it’s a mindset,” he continued. “We recognize where we have gone wrong as a team and mistakes that we’ve made in the past, and we’ve all been working hard to make changes. Certainly, we’re much stronger for having gone through what we have so far, and we are seeing every day as a new opportunity to improve our game. I’m ready to get going to Newport: it’s time to get some points on that leaderboard.”

The start of the 5,500 nautical mile (6,329 mile/10,186 kilometer) Leg 4, from Itajaí to Newport, Rhode Island, U.S. is scheduled for Sunday at 1315 local time / 1615 UTC / 1815 CEST. Click here for further information on how to follow.

Itajaí In-Port Race Rankings
1st=5 points, 2nd=4 points etc
1. 11th Hour Racing Team (USA), 5 points
2. Biotherm (FRA), 4 points
3. Team Malizia (GER), 3 points
4. Team Holcim-PRB (SUI), 2 points
5. Guyot environnement – Team Europe (FRA/GER), 1 point

Overall Standings In-Port Race leaderboard
1. 11th Hour Racing Team 13 points (4+4+ 5)
2. Team Malizia 11 points (5+3+3)
3. Biotherm 7 points (3+0+4)
4. Holcim-PRB 7 points (0+5+2)
5. GUYOT environnement – Team Europe 5 points (2+2+1)

Overall leaderboardshttps://www.theoceanrace.com/en/scoreboard