Tagged: Spain

WE MADE IT!

Team SCA (Sam Davies/GBR) finally completed a gruelling Leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race on Tuesday

ITAJAÍ, Brazil, April 7 – Battered, bruised, but defiant to the last, Team SCA (Sam Davies/GBR) finally completed a gruelling Leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race on Tuesday and arrived to a well-deserved Brazilian welcome fit for heroines.

Itajaí reserved its very best weather for the arrival of the first all-women’s crew to enter the race for 12 years, a sharp contrast to the conditions the team have battled with since leaving Auckland on March 18.

At the beginning of last week, having struggled in 50 knots of wind (92 km per hour) and a confused sea state, Team SCA were one of three crews to crash on their sides during a Chinese gybe, damaging their fractional code zero, a key sail in the process.

The setback left them with no chance of keeping pace with the main racing pack led by winners, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (Ian Walker/GBR), which completed the 6,776-nautical mile (nm) leg on Sunday.

At one stage, they also lost their electronics overnight, effectively sailing blind in the Southern Ocean.

Then, last Sunday, they were rocked again by three collisions with unidentified objects as they raced up the Brazilian coast in the South Atlantic, the first doing considerable damage to the rudder.

Undaunted, Davies and her 11-strong crew battled on to finish the event’s toughest leg at around 1352 GMT (local time 1052) on Tuesday (see panel for elapsed times).

“We made it to dock! We made mistakes, we had things go wrong, but we fixed it all and we’ve made it here, and we’re in one piece so we’re happy,” said the British skipper.

“We proved at the beginning that we could keep up with the others, but then we broke our fractional sail, the sail that we really needed for this leg.

“So we kind of let ourselves down by losing that sail. It was really, really hard; we were frustrated. There was nothing much we could do in certain conditions without our fractional.

“The race became a bit of different challenge from then on.”

Team SCA have earned five points to take their overall tally to 29.

The shore crew, working with the race’s Boatyard team, will now have a busy few days ensuring the boat is back to optimum condition ready for the Team Vestas Wind Itajaí In-Port race on April 18 and the Leg 6 departure for Newport, Rhode Island, a day later.

Meanwhile, Dongfeng Race Team (Charles Caudrelier/FRA), who were forced to retire from the leg after breaking their mast on Monday last week, are delivering their stricken boat to Itajaí under sail and motor.

They will have about four days to have their boat repaired in time for the Newport departure.

Photo: Buda Mendes / Volvo Ocean Race

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/46892/

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SAMARITANS IN SPAIN

The Samaritans also visit Fontcalent prison in Alicante each month

The last few weeks have seen a number of high profile cases in the news involving top professional people and their struggles to cope with life´s challenges.

Readers will no doubt be aware of the Germanwings co-pilot with a history of depression who is suspected of deliberately crashing a jet into the French Alps.

Meanwhile, the American actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie has bravely gone public about coming to terms with further extensive preventative surgery in an effort, at the young age of 39, to avoid the cancers to which she is susceptible. In the UK former Burnley footballer Clarke Carlisle has spoken of his “good fortune” in surviving his suicide attempt and relationship issues in a bid to encourage other – especially reticent male – sufferers of emotional distress to seek out help.

How many readers know that the Samaritans in Spain are here to provide that help locally to whoever may call? With their phone lines now open 24×7 they provide a free, completely confidential, English language support service for people of any age experiencing emotional problems of any type or intensity.

The service is modelled on that offered for more than 60 years in the UK and the Samaritan name is used in Spain under licence. Samaritans is comprised entirely of un-paid volunteers, with all of those offering the listening service extensively trained and supported as they “stand alongside” people through their suffering.

They will listen regardless of how big or small the issue, and regardless of what the caller has or has not done. They listen without judging or telling people what they should or shouldn’t do.

Samaritans is not aligned to any other organisation, social, religious or political. This assists neutrality, allowing callers to explore their situation their way. What is heard is entirely confidential within the organisation, and no calls or contacts are recorded or traced. No caller needs to give any personal information to talk to a volunteer.

The 24-hour listening service is available to callers on 902 88 35 35 (a national, premium service number, not a premium rate number). Samaritans in Spain cover the whole of Spain, including the mainland and the Islands for the same low cost phone charges. Alternatively you can email a Samaritan by contacting pat@samaritansinspain.com or visit the drop-in centre in the Punta Prima shopping centre for those on the Costa Blanca who want to come in and talk face-to-face.

The Drop-in and charity shop is open from 10.00am to 2.00pm Monday to Saturday – further details and directions are found at www.samaritansinspain.corn – you can also follow news and articles with them on Facebook.

The Samaritans also visit Fontcalent prison in Alicante each month offering the same service to English-speakers there, and to their relatives and are pleased to work in co-operation with other caring organisations, with the British Consulate in Alicante, the British Embassy in Madrid and many others elsewhere across Spain.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/46884/

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