Martine Grael / Team AkzoNobel

gender Female
Cécille, below, talks about how Jules strategy has paid off and they've picked up 40 miles on the other boats in one sched. Still a massive way to go and doldrums and stuff, but it's cool. Jules, at the nav station, looks at a chart. Jules, in the hatch, talks to Nicho, in the cockpit, about strategy. Nicho: Last two scheds are the two best scheds we've ever had. Now put some miles on Scallywag. And still some concern about Brunel and TTToP, with a little bit of leverage. "Minefield after minefield from here to New Zealand." When they were behind they were looking at these upcoming transitions as the opportunity to get past the leaders. So have to be careful. But still, rather be here than back there. Simeon trimming, Martine on the pedestal. Nicho (I think?) steering; Nicolai trimming.Simeon looks at Scallywag, sailing a quarter mile astern and to leeward. Simeon talks about sailing north, away from New Zealand. Talks wind and clouds with Nicho on the helm. Nicho looks for shadows of clouds. Martine on the helm. Nicolai on the helm, waving "goodbye" to Scallywag. Justin talks about staying in touch with Scallywag. Jules talks about a front coming. They flop in light conditions Shifting the stack forward. Nav station. Brad on deck as they go slow. Luke on the helm: points out the front behind them; expecting big things in the nxt three or four hours. Martine, Simeon putting on foulies. Sailing in more wind. Simeon in the pit; Cecille on the pedestal. Sail changes as it gets dark. Looks like J1 going up, MH0 coming down?Approaching a front. Jules a the nav station. Martine on the bow as they flop. "This feels wrong, very wrong. We're going the wrong way." Jules: tacked a little too early in hindsight. Very light. Very disappointed. Made the decision to tack too quickly. For the first sched it was okay, second sched not very good. Martine and Brad working on the foredeck. Knotmeter shows less than a knot. Drifting, slatting. Rolling up the MH0. Looking at the chart.Dockout. Brad clasps hands with people on the dock as they pull out. Simeon waves from the wheel. Prestart as they unfurl the MH0. Unzipping the J1 bag. Jules calling time to the start. "Racing with a header." Nicolai, on the wheel: "Racing." Dongfeng astern of them, Brunel (with Scallywag unfurling their MH0 visible beyond) sails down from above and behind them; TTToP and MAPFRE visible beyond them. Brad, looking to weather, calls wind: "Max pressure in 10." Pinching up to lee-bow Scallywag. Furling the MH0 to tack. Simeon in the pit, grinding with Cécille. Cécille with her Kiwi-accented English: "Light patch in 2. Building again in 5." She recaps their good start. Martine bagging the MH0 on the foredeck. Simeon, on the rail, talks about the building wind they'll likely see. He's happy to be leading, but points out they have 6,200 miles to go. Clip cuts off in mid-sentence.Darkness and the sound of flopping sails. On deck at night, Jules is in the foreground, his face illuminated by the light from a tablet. Behind him the railing by the helm is lit by red light. Jules: "The only problem at the moment this way is that no one's actually moving." Nicho: "We can still do our five minutes heading north." Jules: "On starboard." Nicho: "Before running into where MAPFRE is." They discuss that MAPFRE and Dongfeng have stopped. [Guys: I've seen the future. There's a huge windless cloud ahead.] Nicho: "But at least we'll be heading north until we stop." Simeon and Cécile grind on the pedestal. Stars overhead; the main pops over as they tack to starboard. Below, at the nav station, Nicho points out the changed positions on the chart: They've pulled ahead of Dongfeng and MAPFRE, while Vestas further west has made up ground. "Just from one cloud." Another 500, 600 miles of this, he says. Low-altitude drone shot of AkzoNobel drifting on a glassy sea. Martine throws something small down the forward hatch. Crew sits on sails on the bow. Below, Brad says to Nicolai: "Nicolai, you still awake?" Nicolai: "Yeah. Too warm to sleep. Just watching a bit of Netflix." They have a little scripted chitchat. Jules calls down the hatch that they want to do a peel to the J1, and they need some big strong muscle-y men. Shot of the instruments on the mast: Boatspeed: 0.93. High-altitude time-lapse drone shot of AkzoNobel drifting along. Nicho talks about the "good guys" generally doing okay in the doldrums. Nicolai pulls the main. Very-high-altitude drone shot showing them parked. Pretty slomo shot of their branding reflected in the water. Luke, on the helm, talks about the mood: concerned. Need to come out of the doldrums okay so the front bunch gets a jump. Low-altitude drone shot at sunset with another boat beyond them. I think it's probably Vestas.AkzoNobel is sailing upwind inside Port Phillip Bay on starboard. Nicho, on the stern, talks about how they couldn't hold their lane on port tack after the start. "Don't know. Not sure what happened. We were slow on port for a long time." Shot of their stern with a Bravo (protest) flag flying; other boats in the distance. Simeon below: "Yeah, we had a bit of a speed issue, yeah." Shots of crew moving the stack. Nicho: "It's not where you want to be... back of the pack... No use grumbling about it." Below, Nicolai and Simeon are looking through the window in the hull, talking about the prop. Maybe it wasn't folding properly? Brad looks through an inspection tool: "It's closed but it's got weed in it... Looks like I'm going over the side. Get a lot of heel on, and rip it off." Sam: "Would this explain the speed?" Brad: "Hopefully." On deck, Brad gets lowered over the weather side in his foulies with lines forward and aft; he goes down near the waterline to inspect. Cécile's back is in the foreground as she relays Brad's words, then helps him back on deck. Brad: "A bit of weed. Not as big as it looked. But it's closed. Nothing underwater slowing us down. So get into it." Later, on the stern, Sam asks Brad: "How's it feel to be in last place coming out of Australia?" Brad: "I hate to say, but we're used to it." Luke: "New Year's resolution? Probably just to win a few legs here." Martine: "I dunno. Just keep positive." Brad: "Not be last out of the next start. And start getting in front of the fleet." Rainbow in the boat's spray to leeward. Luke talks about the frustration of starting off in last or close to last. "People say you're unlucky, but you create your own luck." Talks about teamwork, they're a great group of sailors. Real rainbow to leeward; a competitor below and behind them. Simeon talks about them doing well in the last sched. "Zero to hero." First in the position reports. At the nav station, Jules talks about their performance. Sam: "How'd you manage to check back in with the fleet?" Jules: "Bit of luck, really. Guys have been sailing pretty hard all night. Everyone's been up pretty much most of the night. Gybed on a couple of shifts. Got a nice header for a while..." Talks about disappointment at the start, needing to hang in there. "If we go fast we'll be all right." Rainbow with Vestas, Dongfeng to leeward.Slomo of AkzoNobel sailing upwind, close-hauled on port tack. Nicolai, below, talks about the remaining leg for them. Nicho, at the helm: "Learned the same lessons I think I've been taught before: never to be complacent. I don't think we were complacent, but we had one terrible gybe which I'm more responsible for than anyone, and that cost us the leg. And the usual story, that you make that mistake in the middle of nowhere, and you can pay for it for a long time. So that's what we did this leg." Martine, on deck: "What I've learned on this spedific leg? Probably a lot of patience. And try to find joy, and happiness, in little things every day... Sometimes a bird, or whale-watching, has made my day, a funny joke; anything. Always try to find the thing that makes you happy." Brad sleeping on the foredeck in bare feet. Nicolai, below: "I think this leg's been quite a challenge for many of us. Not so much a normal Volvo leg, physically a challenge, but more mentally and team-wise, it's been a tough one. But it's also been one that we probably needed to have to keep getting better and better, and hopefully learn from it, all of us, and become a stronger team. And I think we are handling quite well the headwinds we have, no issues within the team, it's all head down and keep working whatever we find ourself in and that's quite positive and quite good." Slomo of someone's hands on the wheel.GoPro shot from the masthead. Shot of the instruments on the mast. Looks like they're reaching on port tack in about 10 knots of wind. Nicolai grinds. Clew of the MH0 in the background. Nicolai: explains the strategic situation, how they have to sail upwind. Nicho, on the helm: "Boredom has set in... Question of the watch is how much Nutella gets produced in the world in a year." He's added another question as to annual Vegemite production. Martine and Nicolai discuss Nutella production. Nicolai: "It's been a relatively short leg, but it feels like a long one." Hard because they haven't been near other boats. Nicho says they've learned some things about the boat. Nicolai: Looking forward to land and rest, but mostly to getting a reset to get back with the fleet. Shot of the mainsail looking up.Emily steers while wearing reindeer antlers. Beow, brad listens through earbuds as he inventories gear (?) in the bow (?). An inflatable shark head watches him. Brad talks to James. "Yeah, I'm just listening to Jingle Bells, Christmas carols, that sort of thing. Get myself in the festive mood." In the galley area, Justin is going through a bag of something while Emily distributes candies, including candycanes her mum brought over. She talks about how with freezedried food it's hard to do much in terms of Christmas dinner, but she's making sure everyone has their favorite. "Try to keep a happy boat." Justin: "I've got beef stroganof. Probbly my least-favorite meal on the boat. I was hoping for roast lamb, mashed potatoes." We see the pouches next to the galley with candycanes in each. Brad: "Chirsmas day has consisted of the same things we've been doing for the last 3 weeks. Four hours on, four hours off." He explains he's been doing some restocking of spares, making sure he knows what they've got going into the next leg. On deck, an animated Santa toy has been lashed to the instruments on the mast. He sings a rock & roll Christmas song. On the bow in the background, Martine and Brad (I think) are shifting t eh stack forward for lighter wind.Slomo shots of the crew working in the cockpit. Washing machine. Nicho comes below, takes his gear off, washes his face in the galley. Nicho: "You see when you take certain medication, 'Don't operate this vehicle when tired and drowsy'? Well, everyone's operating this vehicle tired and drowsy." Talks about getting rest, food, makes for better decisions. Martine comes below, takes off her gear. "For me sleep and food go side by side. The less I sleep the more I have to eat to have energy." Martine eats. Nicolai talks below about the balance between sleeping and eating. Brad: People sacrifice a lot to get a couple of minutes extra sleep. People don't brush their teeth to get a couple more minutes of sleep. Don't want to name names." Martine gets in her bunk. Nico, talks about the upcoming stronger conditions. "Plenty of sleep. Just look at me." He grins.Slomo shots of Minke whales surfacing close to their port quarter. Martine describes it. "First time we saw it was literally less than 5 meters away."Slomo through wheel of the ocean. Slomo water in cockpit, Martine's corn rows. Below, Martine talks about how the double points in the leg are going to really hurt them. "It's a bit disappointing. But it's still a long race to go so the chances are still there." Simeon: "We're up to speed, but yeah, a long way behind the pack. We're doing good polars... fingers crossed there are still some opportunities." Nicho: Talks below about the same thing (double points, finishing at the back)... "One maneuver gone wrong, and before that we were competing nicely. People gotta... draw faith that we can do it. We can match up with these guys. Frustrating part now is we've gotta wait for our next opportunity. We probably won't get another opportunity on this leg. Sadly I think we're done. It's not gonna stop us trying." Simeon: "It makes you realize that one bad gybe can cost you a lot in one day... Yeah, it's a setback, but the race's not over." Martine, chewing and staring into space: "Well. You gotta have the bad ones to realize the good ones. Yeah."Epic slomo shot of a big Southern Ocean wave. Nicho, below, eating: "Batten fouled again and another repair again. Getting there. Main's back up, so it's not slowing us down any." Justin, below, repairs a batten. "This is Frankenbatten. It's now got four different battens in it." He shows his work: The batten with multiple clamps holding the pieces together while glue cures. "We're obviously trying to be tidy Kiwis who use as much [something] as we can, 5200." There are clamps made from vice grips, from channel lock pliers with a big rubber band around the handle squeezing it closed, and a high-tech looking black clamp. Don't tell the media guy, but I've raided his camera box and found a clamp. Which I'm sure he's going to work out when it gets back that it's been used for some sort of repair." Nicho: "We don't mind doing all these running repairs all the time as long as we can go at pretty much full pace. But it wears everyone out. I don't think Brad has had a full off watch for a long time now. [To Brad.] When was your last full off watch?" Brad (sitting near the galley, pulling off bits of tape): "Can't remember my last full off watch." Brad, to James: "Haven't seen land for over a week now. As far away from anything as you can possibly be, more or less. It's not too bad. It's actually quite cool. Really good breeze, good waves. Good sailing." Martine coils lines in the pit, gets washed over by a wave. Below, she talks to Konrad: "Southern Ocean has been pretty cool, going downwind, in these big waves, sailing during the night with big seas. Cold weather as well. Everythying is dripping on the boat, but sailing has been pretty good, besides our breakdown. As long as we have all the sails up, it's all good." Nicho: "You have moments when you wonder what you're doing down here. Other moments quite in awe of the natural bueauty and harshness of the place... How vulnerable you are down here on a little carbon shell in the middle of nowhere. You want the leg to be over, but also how special it is to be here." Slomo of Nicho on the helm, albatross flying by. [Side note: Again, no Simeon. I'm increasingly of the view that Nicho is actually functionally skipper at this point.]Somone (Brad?) works on the masttrack up the mast. Simeon says it's the second attempt, with different glue. "Not a specified curing time like the books. But we hope it's strong enough." Going to hoist the main again, and put a strap around where the batten car is and hpe for the best. Everyone looks at the sail with expressions of concern. Nicho: "It'll work". With the main up they sail faster. Everyone looking up. Nicolai on the stern talks about how they knew after the first one it wouldn't be a good repair, but they knew after this one it would be a good one. "It's holding." Below, Nicho is getting his foulies off. "Been sailing two or three hours, and no problems, so... Hopefully now we can be 100% to Melbourne, catch some miles up." In the background Martine gets her foulies off. Nicho talks about how there could be a weather pattern that would pull the boats together. "We're a long way behind, but no one's giving up." Talks about needing to make the next start, and get the boat fully prepared and operational.Pretty clouds. Crew shifting the stack as AkzoNobel sails downwind with the main lowered. Nicho explains that they've just finished stackign in preparation for hoisting the main. Talks about the repair; difficulty of getting a glue cure in the cold conditions. Maybe having a chance to catch some boats. Main goes up slowly. Nico, on the stern: "Tracks popped straight off. So obviously it couldn't hold in the conditions... Hopefully we'll get it down now, and... try it again. Still 3,000 miles to go." (Side note: It sure seems like Nicho has basically taken over the boat. Is Simeon even in command at this point?) Lowering the main. Martine gets washed off the cabin top by a wave; catches herself. They struggle to lower the main. Jules talks about the fleet being gone, not wanting to get down south and have to beat back, which they can't do. Nicho responds: "Well, we can step it down later in the day. Get a plan for this track. Even if the fleet's gone, get to Melbourne on time... for the next start." Below, Brad takes off his foulies. Looks very discouraged. "Pretty frustrating working two or three days to get it done, it pops off so quickly afterwards." Talks about trying to jury something else up, hope that that works. Slomo albatross. Below, working on the track repair, Nicolai watches Simeon eats in the background. "We've got five tubes of glue left, which means after this we've got one more. So this better work." More repair attempts on the mast. Emily watches from the stern. Nicolai, below, explains that the glue needs 6 to 8 hours to cure. Going to sail some more, and then try to hoist again before sunset.Shooting through the cockpit railing under gray skies, we see a bunch of competitors on AzkoNobel's weather quarter. Left to right I think they might be Brunel, Dongfeng, MAPFRE, and more distant maybe Vestas? Then we see a shot of Simeon working on the pit winch with Scallywag ahead of and to leeward of them. Simeon looks up at the slot to check sailtrim. He talks to James about not doing too well at the start: "We need to practice those ones." Talks about being close to the fleet, the wind being up/down/left/right. Justin, on the helm, talks about wind pressure. We see Scallywag, on starboard under the MH0, crossing them while Brad goes to go out on the bowsprit. Nicho, in the cockpit, talks about the contrast during the night of being in almost 40 knots, then getting flat sees and "almost nice sailing again." He talks about the 40 knot conditions being uncomfortable; slamming and worrying about breakage. Martine talks about getting stuck in a hole and passed. Nicolai talks about the first 24 hours being pretty good, intense, hunting and almost back where they want to be. Nicho talks about getting to the new wind and tacking, and then waiting for the front to get there. We see the feet of someone on the helm putting on their boots.Drone shot pans up to show AkzoNobel sailing toward the drone. In the cockpit, Martine trims the main. On the helm, Nicho talks about how they've fallen off the front and winds are lighter [hence the drone footage], and it's hurting them in the previous sched and likely the next one. Luke talks about how they're now last on the leaderboard. "Pretty frustrating. Haven't had the best luck with the weather, unfortunately... but also haven't been sailing the boat as well as we possiby can. So we have a lot of work to do in Cape Town." Jules at the nav station looks concerned. Nicolai aggressively brushes his teeth. Simeon, below, talks about the disappointment: "It's always hard to swallow when you see every sched, moving back." Low-altitude drone shot from the port quarter. Peter, grinding: "We're pushing as hard as possible, trying to catch every wave. But we've been losing for a few days." Nicho, on the helm; Simeon, below, talk about needing to stay focused and keep pushing despite the disappointment. Luke, on the stern pedestal: "Sometimes you get the elevator; sometimes you get the shaft." Drone shot.Emily gets dressed below, clips on a fanny pack. She talks about how it was a big risk for them to cut the corner by positioning themselves east of the fleet. A big risk for Jules, because there are all the other navigators saying no, we think this western route is faster. Peter, on deck, trims the main and explains that if you stay with the fleet you know you'll be close. But if you take a risk you have a chance of making a big gain. Behind, Martine is on the helm, beaming (as usual when steering). Luke talks about taking the risk. Luke: "Looks like now maybe it hasn't paid off, but it's certainly not over yet. We'll see what happens." Jules, below at the nav station, about the risk of diverging from the four boats ahead. Shot of routing software on the computer. Talks about how the weather pattern was evolving ahead of them, so they wouldn't necessarily be in the same weather pattern as the leaders when they got there. Jules: "We're sill gonna be a fair way behind, and we'll have to look for the next opportunity." Super-low-altitude drone shot (well below deck level) of AkzoNobel from close ahead and to weather, pulling back and ascending.Sunrise (that's three OBRs who opened their clip with this sunrise). On the rail, Nicho explains the watch system, in which they stagger. He, "Martini" (Martine), Brad, and Nicolai have been on; now Luke and Peter are coming up. Martine on the helm, smiling. She really seems to like getting the chance to drive. Drone shot with AkzoNobel silhouetted. Was that shot from this morning? Looks like they're triple-heading, but with a reef (?) in the main? Maybe it's B-roll shot a different day. Martine and Nicho, below, going off watch. Nicho: "It's the simple things, like helping each other with food. Up on deck, it's just working out what each other's strengths and weaknesses are, and learning off each other." Martine: "It's Chris Nicholson's sixth time doing this race, so definitely got some experience." Martine, smiling at Nicho: "You're much more the decision-maker, 'cause you wake me up more." Chris: "Oh, yeah. I've woken her up several times an hour early when I've looked at my watch incorrectly... Better than being an hour late, though." Chris cleans down below. Martine crawls into her bunk. Martine: "It's not so easy getting in and out of this bunk, but it's pretty nice once you're in it." Drone shot with rainbow behind AkzoNobel. Chris gets out of his bunk. Jules reads the latest sched: "We did 114, and the next best was 112 by Plastic." Nicho talks about how he got about 2 hours sleep during his 4 hours off-watch, between checking with Jules before going down, doing some cleanup, and now getting up a bit early to get info on what to do next. Nicho: "Little bit of Groundhog Day. But we made some miles on the last sched. It's been the first for a few days, so it's nice." Low-altitude drone shot from the bow.AkzoNObel reaches on port gybe with a reefed main. Simeon sits on the weather rail; Emily sits forward of him on the mainsheet. Simeon talks about having a rough night, having been stuck under a cloud and lost a bit. Slomo of bow. Shot of them racing in a rain squall. Nicolai talks about two kinds of clouds: a "sucking" cloud or a "dropping" cloud. "Dropping clouds are the good ones, they come with rain but they also come with winds. The sucking clouds are the bad ones; they just take the breeze and you park up." Shots from inside the cabin as rain pours down on the cockpit. Below, Jules talks about the squall; it was their first big one, 33-35 knots. They saw it on the radar but were late reducing sail and so "got a bit low in it". Jules: "I just got washed back by a wave as I was trying to go forward, got knocked back on my backside, which was a little embarrassing." Shot of Jules being washed off his feet in the cockpit by a wave. Jules talks about seeing the size if the cloud after coming out of it. Slomo shot of water pouring in the cockpit. Martine, soaking wet below, talks about not being able to find her shoes, but it being a good opportunity for a shower, then she resumes looking for fresh clothes.All slomo shots: Martine on the helm in the sunset with spray. Washing machine cockpit shots. Emily on the aft pedestal with the outrigger plowing through the water, then with spray washing over her.Slomo shot of Martine watching dolphins jumping near them. Simeon steers."Konrad stop filming me." Crewmembers bartering food below at night.Martine talks about close action with Dongfeng. "It's been rewarding or disappointing. A bit of a competition, even between watches. You always want to perform well for your watch."Martine on the helm with a big grin on her face as AkzoNobel surfs and spray washes through the cockpit. Later, she talks to Konrad while Simeon steers in the background. Martine: "This morning was one of those moments that you think, that's why I do this. It was a pretty nice downwind, full-on surfing waves. It was pretty good."At the nav station at night, Ross points out things on the computer screen while Martine looks on brushing her teeth. Ross: "Yeah; super light. So we're just hanging into this stuff here, which was the lefty we got. Now we're into this righty, which is the header." Ross, talking to Konrad: "I think we've gone okay. Both Vestas and MAPFRE are both going really well. But I think it's been a trickier night for them... We've just got a little light spot to get through in the next hour, hour and a half, and then we get the breeze and can start pointing for Porto Santo." Shot of crew at the back of the boat before sunrise, with the dawn and Venus visible behind them.Slowmo glamour shot of Martine in sunglasses on the helm.