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#VVOR5 : Meeting with Jens (Jens G)

Par Virtual Regatta - April 8 2015

 

May be a few of us can remember…

 

It was December 2013 in Australia, and for the first time on a Virtual Regatta race, a Danish skipper inscribed his name on the honours-list of the Clipper Round The World, leg 4 !

Regular “customer” in good results, improbable tracks specialist, Jens G was finally rewarded and touch the prize of a deserved consecration. It took him a few months to recidivate, but he makes it in the most amazing way, leaving all the favourites far behind him, to win in Itajai the most mythic leg of the Volvo Ocean Race.

Meeting with Jens a skipper discreet, but efficient…

VR : What are yours results since the start of the race in Alicante?

Jens : Leg 1: Finished 177 – stayed east and was not troubled by ice gate.

Leg 2: Finished 2616 – Light winds normally found close to Madagascar, so I chose the long route going south and then big curve to India. (Same strategy as the win strategy on leg 5), but on leg 2 there was just too many miles to catch up.

Leg 3: Finished 66 – fine result, but can’t help thinking I should have gone a bit more south at Sri Lanka with Sonolento XVI (who finished as number 2).

Leg 4: Finished 228 – Chose the same route as the winner Rakosi. I just took a bigger curve thinking I could avoid light winds by going all the way to Fiji. I wish I have chosen just a little smaller curve like baba-au-rhum, Sirene du Zephyr and laissebeton TPN, who all finished in top 30.

VR: Can you explain what happened in your head when you choose the South track just after the ice gate ?

Jens : Like a lot of other boats I chose to go south after the gate to catch the strong winds. My plan was to take a long curve around the Horn staying in the strong winds for as long as possible. I even jibed 2 times going almost straight south. After the Horn it was tempting to go north and gain boats, but I kept to my plan and took the long curve. At this time the weather forecasts changed to my advantage and I could focus on holding the first place.

VR: Do you think that the general level of Virtual Regatta skippers is increasing since the former Volvo Race ?

Jens : Yes, the level is very high. There are boats that have perfect “boathandling”. They go VERY close to shore and to the ice gates – never missing a single pixel and always on optimal angle to the wind down to a single degree. This is very difficult to beat. So in a short leg I will simply not be able to finish in the top 100.

VR: What do you expect of the next leg sailing to Newport over Recife ?

Jens : I expect a close race until Recife and then the fleet will spread in range. Boats will be taking a long curve not too close to land and when they reach the heights of Puerto Rico they will go north towards Bermuda. Choosing the right strategy approaching Bermuda will be the important part of the leg I think.

VR: Do you have any ambition now for the continuation of the race ?

Jens : In leg 6 and 7 I will continue to take chances and try to get a top result. The last two legs are short and I will not be able to finish in top 100. Regarding the general/overall standing I hope I can finish in top 50.

VR : And do you have any favorites for the final victory ?

Jens : Before the race I would have bet on Istishia to win and Istishia still looks sharp, but I must say that boats like promath and Piguey33 also looks very stable in the top.

VR: In a few words, can you tell us who is Jens?

Jens : I am 43 years old. I have a wife and 2 kids (6 and 8 years), and I live north of Copenhagen in Denmark. I work as a software developer and in my spare time I play golf and run. I used to sail a lot and I was the Danish champion in Optimist and double junior Danish champion in Europe dinghy. After that I slowed down and I have occasionally been crew on my father’s boat and sometimes I windsurf.


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