Sailing: Sanderson worried by inshore wind strength

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After some frantic surgery and midnight shift work, all seven yachts in the Volvo round the world race will line up in Port Phillip Bay today for an inshore race.

Extensive work has been done to the Spanish yacht movistar and 15 people have been working on the Disney-backed Pirates of the Caribbean, but most anxious are the Swedes on Ericsson and their British skipper, Neal McDonald.

They have managed just five days of racing in the last 60 as they had to pull out of the second leg from Cape Town to Melbourne and, unlike movistar and Pirates, have decided to keep the titanium hydraulic keel rams which have given them so much trouble.

Mike Sanderson, on ABN Amro 1 is concerned for the weather for today's race, which, if there is a light wind, could see a repeat of the humiliation he endured in the first inshore race off Sanxenxo. His Juan Kouyoumdjian-designed yacht, and its sister ship ABN 2, seem to thrive in stronger winds which the fickle Melbourne weather gods may not deliver. The next leg to Wellington may also not be easy if the winds are light and the repaired boats show their potential.

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