No announcement yet.

2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #31
    Knut's Passion For The Sea

    “This race is so much more than a sailing event” according to Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad. But what does that mean to a non-sailor like me? I came to the race with no experience of sailing and yet it has completely sucked me into a world of adventure, personalities, and at-the-limits action. I wondered what the hell happened to me - so I asked Knut.

    "Everyone has a responsibility to identify what really triggers you in life" - Knut Frostad
    I have an embarrassing confession. I’ve worked for the Volvo Ocean Race for almost two years, and yet I don’t sail. Can’t sail. I get seasick and the only knot I can tie is the one that fastens my shoelaces. Despite this I have fallen in love with this event.

    The man sitting opposite me knows a thing or two about sailing. Knut Frostad is the CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race, a former Olympian, and a two-time skipper in this race; a man with a rich history. In short he’s the kind of guy I always want to know more about.

    I made this video with Knut attempting to get inside his passion for the sea and sailing. His interview is thoughtful, insightful, and going back to that word again – passionate.

    Perhaps he can help me to understand the reasons I’ve become so invested in this event. What is the mysterious appeal of the Volvo Ocean Race?

    “We have a very real event where people risk their lives, it’s very serious. And we bind countries together. We don’t solve world problems, but we are creating something that people care about beyond money, and status and a lot of other things.

    “In some extreme sports today you can do it just to get exposure. But this race is way too long and way too hard, and way too risky to do it for exposure. After 10 days at sea you don’t even know if people are watching you. And that’s what’s special about this race, that people do it for real. They do it because they mean it.”

    And though the race is a top sporting competition and a massive commercial operation, the fuel that really drives the Volvo Ocean Race is passion. That was what hooked me. Passion is authentic, and to me, passion is one of Knut’s defining qualities.

    I ask if he feels that being the driving passion behind this race can be a burden.

    “First of all I think it’s not just me - people have passion throughout the race, but it can be for different pieces of the puzzle, and to me it’s much more about defining the real things that matter, whether that’s sailing or not. What I’m trying to do with this race is to translate it in a way so that people feel that it matters.

    “Sometimes maybe I carry the sailing side and the responsibility for making people enthusiastic about it, but at the same time I’ve seen so many people being enthusiastic about this event and not taking it from the sailing angle. They never became fans of sailing as such, but they became huge fans of this race and what it does to people. And for me that is what this race is about. This race is a sailing event, but it’s so much more. It’s about a group of people sharing passion, travelling around the world doing cool stuff.”

    And indeed the Volvo is full of ‘cool stuff’, but it’s also a monumental task to put together. To Knut, this is a key aspect of its appeal.

    “The reason I like this event is because I know it’s so rewarding. All the cities, all the millions of people, all kinds of crises all the way. The race is very difficult, and very hard, and that’s why you do it.

    “The Mount Everest we’re trying to climb is that we start from zero every race and then we try to get the world’s attention, and keep all the sponsors happy, 56 stakeholders and 11 cities. To me it’s more challenging than even sailing it.”

    I feel I’m closer now to understanding the essence why I love this event. The race is an authentic challenge for both body and spirit.

    I’m curious about one more thing - Knut is a man who exudes easygoing confidence, but surely he must have his down days?

    “It changes, every day for me as anyone else.” he laughs. “But everyone has a responsibility to identify what really triggers you in life.

    “There are so many jobs that are easy, and they’re so unrewarding. Something that’s very special to this event is that when you’ve done a race, you can look back and know you played a big role in it. And I think every person in this race really does. You can see yourself in the event.”

    article by Austin Wong ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


    • #32

      Bloomberg chats with Avimedica's Charlie Enright on the Volvo with emphasis on the art of finances
      involving getting a campaign together. Click To Play
      " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery


      • #33
        A superb extraction for future hopefuls on grasping the give and take relationship between sponsors and those seeking same.


        • #34
          The title is a little confusing. Sounds like Charlie and company have a solid game plan, or Knut does at least.

          Ivy Leaguers vs Billionaires? If they were playing full contact polo, it would create a certain buzz, especially if there was wagering.


          • #35
            Musto's April 1st Gag

            Published on Mar 31, 2014
            Groundbreaking new Personal Climate Controlled suits introduced today by MUSTO in cooperation with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing!

            The suits will enable our boys to enjoy the comfortable winter temperatures of Abu Dhabi (which average 23 degrees Centigrade) whether sailing in the freezing south Atlantic ocean or the tropical Indian Ocean. Watch this clip to learn how they work.

            The original press release came with this:


            Hope you're well.

            Just wanted to get in touch with a new product from MUSTO that ties into their recent sponsorship of the Volvo Ocean Race.

            We've created the world's first battery-powered climate-control sailing suit for the Abu Dhabi Sailing Team – who are used to much warmer temperatures than the slightly less inviting climates they'll be experiencing around Cape Horn and the like...

            I've popped a release below and have attached a mocked up image. We also have additional imagery and video content available of the suit which I can forward if you're interested (didn't want to clog up your inbox) - Please note that all content is embargoed until 1st April at 11am GMT.

            Would be great to hear your thoughts on whether this could work as a news story for Pressure Drop - either yay or nay.


            Seems like a lot of work for the concept, Musto please contact and we'll save you $$$$

            MUSTO and Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing collaborate on Personal Climate Controlled Offshore Clothing for The Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.

            MUSTO invent the first thermostatically controlled offshore gear for Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing’s round the world race campaign

            MUSTO, the world’s leading offshore sailing brand, has revealed it has been exclusively collaborating with the elite round the world race team to develop a range of ground-breaking personal climate controlled (PCC) offshore clothing. The new suit, the PCC, will sit within the HPX Pro Series range which has been developed to meet the specific needs of the professional ocean racing sailor.

            Based on state of art technology developed by the space agency, the super-lightweight, fully waterproof and breathable, one-piece stretch-to-fit Abu Dhabi PCC suits will enable the crew to maintain a comfortable body temperature whatever extremes of hot and cold they encounter during the 38,739 nautical mile race.

            The ambitious project was commissioned jointly by MUSTO and Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing after physiologists in the UAE capital discovered that the Emirate’s warm winter conditions, which average at 23 degrees Celsius in December and January, were the perfect conditions to support peak athletic performance and muscle recovery.

            To activate the suits on board their new yacht Azzam, the Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing crew will plug themselves into the master PCC units located at the back of the boat. Once attached, the sailors can dial up their desired body temperature using a thermostat keypad built into the forearm of the suit. Lithium battery backup will maintain heat for up to two hours when not connected to allow the sailors to unplug during watch changes or to leave the cockpit for a sail change.

            Additional upsides of the body hugging suits compared to traditional offshore gear are previously undreamt of levels of freedom of movement and massive savings in the weight of the crew gear.

            Nigel Musto, President of MUSTO, said "For years we have been trying to reduce clothing weight whilst maintaining performance. Now with the innovative Abu Dhabi PCC suit not only have we achieved a significant weight reduction in kit, about 90% or 80kg, but we’ve also improved both performance and recovery by allowing the sailors to maintain a consistent muscle temperature. The performance gains we have seen as a result are extremely significant.”

            “As the suit is so innovative we nervously awaited feedback from Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing’s first sail aboard Azzam – the response was so overwhelmingly positive from all the team that we couldn’t wait to unveil the PCC suit.”

            “In the new one-design world of the Volvo Ocean Race, every reduction in weight or improvement in performance is like gold dust to the teams and this offshore clothing breakthrough could ultimately make the difference between winning and losing.”

            ADOR Skipper Ian Walker commented "I’m certain that the MUSTO PCC Suit is a real game changer – I can’t wait to wear the finished version on the start line in October. We are now able to sail around the world in our own microclimates which for me will be set to mimic a perfect Abu Dhabi day in December. It’s set to be the most comfortable Volvo Ocean Race I have ever done"

            For MUSTO the breakthrough represents a new approach to offshore sailing clothing design, which it hopes will be adopted by more elite racing teams in the future. The Abu Dhabi PCC suits will undergo four months of further tests and modifications as part of ADOR’s training programme in Europe and North America before the final race-ready suits are handed over to the team in September.

            MUSTO plan to have the new suits available in stores by the end of July 2015.

            " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

   Photo Gallery


            • #36

              Look what just come out of the paint shed!
              " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

     Photo Gallery


              • #37

                Seahorse Magazine provides some detail to Team Alvimedica, Knut's vision and the new model of the Volvo Ocean Race

                [I]In one Volvo Ocean Race cycle teams have gone from being chockablock with the most seasoned ocean racing veterans to more than half the teams full of first-time roundthe- world sailors for the 2014/15 race. The reasons for this global change are many, and reaping the benefits of race CEO Knut Frostad’s management of this evolution are two young Americans and a Turkish medical equipment company. Charlie Enright and Mark Towill, the leaders of newly formed Team Alvimedica, are set to be poster boys for this new model of ocean racing where next-generation stars are identified early and shopped around to sponsors knocking at Frostad’s door wanting in on a race where new design builds are no longer a prerequisite for entry.

                ‘I saw a video in 2011 of their Transat project and how they had raised their own funds,’ says Frostad. ‘They already had a good media guy with Amory Ross and I thought, “This is what the future looks like.”’

                So Frostad flew Enright and Towill over to the start of the last race in Alicante. He had been in discussions with Alvimedica for a year when he introduced the two Americans to Cem Bozkurt, the company’s CEO, at a Volvo function last autumn. They hit it off this winter and Bozkurt signed on to this and possibly also the next running of the event. ‘At the Alicante meeting they wanted to paint a clear picture of the amount of work involved and how much responsibility was on our shoulders,’ says Towill. ‘At the end of the day it’s us leading the charge.’

                Towill says he and Enright put together their sponsorship package with seed money they had raised, hired graphic designers for their visualisations and funded their own travel. Volvo lent guidance, he says, in each aspect as well. ‘But before Alicante,’ says Towill, ‘it was still a dream.’

                It has been reported that this team will be an all ‘under-30’ team and all American sailors. Enright says neither is true. When asked if they are looking for sailors who have done the race, he says, ‘That’d be great. We’re looking to surround ourselves with a great team that works well together. Being the youngest team will happen organically.’

                He added that by the time you sail one or two races you’re usually no longer under 30. ‘Except maybe one individual,’ says Enright, probably referring to Rome Kirby whose stock is high after one Volvo Ocean Race and a winning America’s Cup campaign all by the age of 24.

                Team Alvimedica is also carrying solid street cred on the management side with the signing of Bill Erkelens, a recommendation from veteran American Volvo team manager Kimo Worthington. Erkelens has run several large-scale sailing projects including Oracle’s 2000 America’s Cup bid and the build of Speedboat for Alex Jackson.

                Enright, 29, and Towill, 25, weren’t quite plucked from obscurity. The two have built careers as professional sailors filling every role possible. Enright says the past 10 years for him have been about creating opportunities in the sport and ‘the next 10 are about capitalising on them’. And they are both well aware of their fortune in being tapped by Frostad. ‘It’s easier to sail around the world than find a sponsor,’ says Enright. ‘And if it was the last race [with the VO70] we’d be so far behind…’

                Enright, a dinghy sailor from New England, and Towill, from Hawaii, leapfrogged their way into the offshore racing scene when they were selected for Roy Disney’s Morning Light motion picture project for the 2007 TransPac. Enright was still in his teens and it was a chance he labelled an ‘opportunity on steroids’. Since then the Volvo has been the pair’s only goal.

                ‘Being younger, it’s tough to get into a leadership position and bring your team along,’ says Enright who stepped into a sales job at North Sails right after college. Building his skills with privately owned raceboats moved him closer to his goal but he and Towill may be the first fruits of Oakcliff Sailing’s labours to create a pathway for professional sailors in the US.

                Enright and Towill took the bull by the horns and helped to create the All-American Offshore Team, competing in the 2010 Bermuda Race on the 90-footer Genuine Risk and the 2011 Transat with the STP 65 Vanquish. Though neither are graduates of Oakcliff, they have received considerable financial and logistical support from Hunt Lawrence’s organisation. Boat owners the two raced with and family and friends also contributed to their campaigns and have helped fill in the pieces leading up to the Volvo Ocean Race deal.

                Towill, a Brown University graduate like Enright, has had his head down since the Morning Light project, racing on the small keelboat circuit in between trips to his home in Kaneohe, winning a Melges 32 worlds along the way. He has also been part of the successful Team Aqua on the RC44 circuit. But creating opportunities over the past seven years wasn’t enough to break into the Volvo, says Enright, until Volvo’s own business development arm, bolstered by a one-design fleet of Volvo Ocean 65s, tapped them.

                ‘With the one-design concept we didn’t want to level the playing field, that sends the wrong message,’ says Knut Frostad. ‘Rather we want to open the race up and remove entry barriers.’ Removing those barriers, which included the need for full-time design and build experts in addition to the shore and sailing teams, has already borne fruit for the Volvo Ocean Race.

                The next step for the event was to help interested sponsors find teams and Frostad has helped usher in this process through the business development arm of the race. Alvimedica, a company only six years old, saw a clear path to a worthy sponsorship agreement. ‘We can’t use classical marketing like advertising in newspapers or TV in our industry,’ says Bozkurt, whose company makes medical equipment specifically for use by cardiologists. From the beginning of Alvimedica he analysed the interests of their customers and golf, tennis and sailing were the top three. So he began to look for events in those realms to sponsor.

                MAKING TEAMS HAPPEN
                Many efforts have been made of late to make professional sailing a sustainable ‘mainstream’ sport, raising the profiles, and salaries, of the sailors, and garnering workable sponsorship relationships. Only the marquee events have had the bandwidth to experiment with these possibilities and for the Volvo Ocean Race Knut Frostad’s clear perspective on the evolution of professional sailing has lit a pathway to redefine the professional sailing model for offshore events. When I interviewed Frostad for a piece on Team Alvimedica my first question was a cynical one, asking why there are so many newbies in the race and was this all necessary? He came back quickly with a concise history lesson, which led to his innovative business solution for Volvo. ‘This [professional sailing] is not something that happened in the first [Whitbread] race,’ said Frostad. ‘In the 1980s and ’90s people who made teams happen were famous skippers: Dennis [Conner], Peter Blake, Grant Dalton. If they wanted to compete they had to raise the money themselves. When Peter Blake grew up his only option was to create what today is commercial sailing. The people who sailed for those teams then grew up in a different world. The new generation was always paid as professional sailors. Now, who is making the teams happen?’

                That question, ‘Who is making the teams happen?’, was one that Frostad said has kept his and his predecessor’s stomachs unsettled each race cycle. He took the bold step in 2008 to have Volvo help find the backing for two teams. In 2011 there were three teams Volvo helped to usher into the race. ‘Now we find sponsors ourselves,’ said Frostad. ‘They are looking for a profile. This is a very good way. We [Volvo] are the only one who has the same objective as the sponsor.’

                Sponsors of ocean racing teams are wondering what kind of risk they are taking. As the entity running the event, Volvo now says, ‘We’ll take care of you too.’ Frostad said the old model left a lot of uncertainty in the sponsor/team relationship. ‘Sailors would pitch to sponsors,’ he said, ‘and it’s not easy for a sponsor to tell who’s good and who’s not.’ Even though there are one-design boats and a heavy proportion of new Volvo Ocean Race sailors this race, Frostad sees this as an ‘opening of doors’ and the way forward for the sport’s new heroes. Almost more importantly, the sponsors, including Alvimedica CEO Cem Bozkurt, see eye to eye with Frostad on the Volvo Ocean Race business model. ‘It’s not logical for a business to run after designing and building a boat, and finding a team,’ said Bozkurt. ‘We should be doing our own business.’
                ‘Single player sports don’t mean much to us,’ says Bozkurt who races a Farr 40 and IRC 30 for corporate teambuilding within the company. ‘This is nine months with nine guys. It’s a really big dream for everyone. Most of our doctors will be watching.’

                Bozkurt asked Frostad to help find a sailing team. Alvimedica initially engaged former members of Team New Zealand. ‘But they didn’t fully appreciate the changes at Volvo and were insisting on the old model,’ says Bozkurt. ‘So we thought, instead of experience, let’s back a team of youngsters.’

                Beyond the exposure and hosting a series of symposiums for cardiologists at the stopovers, Bozkurt hopes to gain as a race byproduct an infusion of inspiration for the youth of Turkey. ‘Turkey is a young country,’ says Bozkurt, ‘and Charlie and Mark are courageous. They did not give up education due to sailing. Bright young people don’t have to give up on sailing to go to work, nor the other way around. They are good examples. If you arrange your business well, sailing helps with career development and is also a lifelong sport.’

                The big question as we approach the race start is whether or not the raw talent of the youngest team in the race is enough to take a podium or will image and personal stories alone fulfil sponsors’ needs? ‘Are we favouring young kids and giving them something better than they warrant? Maybe… but the older sailors are still there and blocking positions,’ says Frostad. ‘In skiing young guys are spotted and kicked up all the time.’

                Frostad used the Youth America’s Cup as an example of the potential in promoting younger sailors. ‘After four days of practice those teams looked as professional as the Cup teams. This tells you the young are really good talent we just don’t see.’ He says the old heroes will still be there but it’s hard to get engagement from 16-30 year-olds when the heroes are 50.

                Worthington agrees. ‘Is there much depth? Maybe not,’ he says. ‘That’s a problem with less expensive campaigns. But it’s good to have new blood. You need a guy like Charlie. He had a dream, picked up the phone and made it happen.’

                No team represents this transition in the Volvo Ocean Race better than Alvimedica and, though the team have yet to hit the water for training, their management style with a uniquely American approach has been road-tested in podium finishes by Paul Cayard, John Kostecki and Ken Read.

                ‘Charlie has asked a lot of questions,’ says Worthington, project manager for the past two Puma campaigns and race winner with Cayard and EF Language.

                ‘But there has to be a little cockiness and these guys are confident. You do what you think you want to do. You have to make the call and have enough confidence in yourself. If you rely too much on advisors then you can’t make the life or death calls. That’s the way it rolls.’

                Striking similarities appear when overlaying Worthington’s successful campaign management approach with Enright and Towill’s. In his first Volvo campaigns he stopped asking questions when he thought he’d heard enough. ‘More important,’ says Worthington, ‘is letting the skipper just concentrate on racing the boat. Conflicts with crew, thinking about budget, flights, I set that up. Kenny just went sailing. I see that arrangement with Charlie and Mark.’

                Towill has already shown the confidence Worthington admires. He has taken on the crew management role Worthington has filled for American Volvo teams for nearly two decades. ‘Other teams are announcing a few sailors at a time,’ says Towill. ‘We’re not doing that. The dynamic between our sailors will be an advantage to us.’

                Towill says the training sessions this spring in Lisbon and summer in Newport, including two transatlantic passages, will involve 10 sailors per session: ‘It’s one thing to pick a team on paper, it’s another to go for a week and see how it handles. We want to let the sailing do the work.’

                Frostad’s vision of the future will certainly be played out on the water over the coming months as a few of those place ‘blockers’ butt up against the Enrights of the fleet. Are the young guys intimidated by these heroes? ‘I don’t have any real heroes I look up to. I look at all of them and take the best from each. I look at all the pitfalls too. No one’s perfect.’

                We invite you to read on and find out for yourself why Seahorse is the most highly-rated source in the world for anyone who is serious about their racing.

                To read on simply SIGN up NOW
                Take advantage of our very best subscription offer or order a single copy of the this issue of Seahorse

                Online at:

                Or via email:

                Or for iPad simply download the Seahorse App at the iTunes store

       ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                • #38
                  Alvimedica Splashes

                  1st look of Alvimedica as she splashes ins South Hampton, Great Britain.

                  Above images courtesy Green Marine/Volvo

                  Below images courtesy Team Alvimedica

         ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                  • #39
                    Alvimedica Passes The Test

                    A landmark day for Team Alvimedica- pull down test followed by getting the sails up for the first time and going for a sail! How many sailing days on Alvimedica do you think they will get in between today and the end of the Volvo Ocean Race in June 2015?

           ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                    • #40
                      The Girls Are Sending It

                      13 women, 3750 nautical miles, 12 days – and 26 knots of wind overnight. Team SCA are crossing the Atlantic Ocean for the first time.

                      The all-female crew left their Spanish base in Lanzarote on Thursday, sailing to Newport in the USA.

                      Onboard Reporter trialist Corinna Halloran sent us a report from the boat – and it sounds quite wild.

                      all images © Corinna Halloran/Team SCA

                      Day 2: Transatlantic Blog

                      Imagine riding a wicked fast motorbike at night. You're cruising along down a windy road. Suddenly, it starts to rain, not just a nice easy rain but a relentless rain – the kind that floods roads.

                      And then you're blind folded. You cannot get off the motorbike; you are propelling yourself faster and faster down hills and bends, into the dark night with water all around.

                      This is what it was like sailing downwind last night in 26 knots. Completely exposed to all of the elements, maneuvering through a gybe completely blind.

                      Sam was stationed at the helm. Her focus was completely on getting the boat safely down waves. She couldn’t see to ensure no one was injured whilst stacking sails from windward to leeward. This process can be a challenge – think carrying long, wet, potato sacks over your shoulder – but you're trying to not to get hurt, or worse, fall off the boat as it screams down waves doing 22, 23, 24, 25 knots.

                      The girls knew the night was going to be tricky. During dinner, Stacey made a good point: we were certainly jumping off into the deep end! No chance to hide now! With the wind and sea state only increasing during the night, the girls needed to be focused.

                      Staying focused, Sam said, would be the key to being safe on a night like last night. All maneuvres, even the smallest of ones, needed to be thoughtful and done with the utmost concentration.

                      Once dawn broke, we continued to see much of the same conditions from the night before, except now we could see. Over the day we had to gybe a few more times before putting in our final, multi-day gybe shortly before dinner.

                      Abby was pretty happy with how the first 24 hours had gone – despite the tough conditions – they had sent it.

                      Team SCA transatlantic crew - Lanzarote-Newport
                      1. Sally Barkow (USA) - Helm / Trimmer
                      2. Carolijn Brouwer (NED) - Navigator / Helm
                      3. Dee Caffari (GBR) - Helm / Pit
                      4. Sophie Ciszek (AUS) – Bow
                      5. Sam Davies (GBR) - Watch Captain / Person In Charge
                      6. Abby Ehler (GBR) - Boat Captain/ Pit
                      7. Stacey Jackson (AUS) – Bow
                      8. Annie Lush (GBR) - Helm / Trimmer
                      9. Elodie-Jane Mettraux (SUI) - Helm / Trimmer
                      10. Justine Mettraux (SUI) - Helm / Trimmer
                      11. Liz Wardley (AUS) - Watch Captain
                      Libby Greenhalgh (GBR) - Navigator (on trial)
                      Corinna Halloran (USA) - OBR (on trial)

                      ETA into Newport on Tuesday May 6, 2014

                      Route: Lanzarote – waypoint east of the Caribbean – Newport

                      Return trip: Newport – waypoint off Lisbon, Portugal (a dry run of the Leg 7) - Lanzarote

             ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                      • #41
                        Emirates Team New Zealand a no go for 2014 / 2015 Volvo

                        Emirates Team New Zealand announced today that it would not be competing in the next Volvo Ocean Race.

                        In recent weeks, the team had explored a joint challenge with Spanish interests. The Volvo Ocean race starts at Alicante, Spain, on October 4 this year.

                        Grant Dalton said the team was not convinced it could mount a successful challenge in the time available and the team’s energies would be better directed towards the next America’s Cup.

                        Dalton said the team had worked hard with excellent people representing the Spanish interests and with the Volvo Ocean Race management to get an entry to the start line.

                        “In the end, time was against us. Every passing day magnified the impact that preparations for a round-the-world race would have on Emirates Team New Zealand’s other operations.

                        “The team exists to win the America’s Cup. With the imminent announcement of the Protocol for the 35th America’s Cup, it’s time for us to withdraw reluctantly from any consideration of participation in the Volvo Ocean race.”

                        - See more at:!2014/05/etnz-w...the-volvo-race
               ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                        • #42

                          It’s not always about the racing, the technology or the plaudits. Sometimes it’s about the feeling of being driven by the wind, the sting of the spray, the hull carving through the water – the simple act of sailing.

                          Less than five months to the first In-Port Race in Alicante and the teams are gearing up. So far there are five boats in the hands of the best sailors in the world, boats designed to race through some of the most violent conditions on earth.

                          This is a hard race and the boats are tough, as are the people who sail them. But amongst the hardship, there are also moments of beauty.

                          And as the anticipation is building, it’s important to remember why sailing is so much more than a sport. It’s a feeling and a passion.

                          We love sailing. We are the Volvo Ocean Race.

                          The Volvo Ocean Race is famous for stunning pictures taken in glamorous locations around the world. But how do we capture these amazing images?
                          In this video we show you how a complex aerial shoot is organised - from the high-tech racing boats and world-class crews sailing them to the photographers and cameramen flying high above.

                          Follow this link to watch a compilation of the best of our aerial footage -

                          All images © Gilles Martin-Raget/Volvo

                 ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                          • #43
                            Cayard Plays Volvo Mentor

                            Alvimedica’s new kids on the block draw on world class mentoring scheme

                            Team Alvimedica’s young guns challenging for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 are already making up the experience gap with innovative solutions to make them as competitive as possible before the starter’s gun sounds in October.

                            Skipper Charlie Enright and Mark Towill launched their rookie campaign for offshore racing’s most prestigious crown back in January this year and have made huge strides already training in their new one-design Volvo Ocean 65.

                            But the American sailors, both still in their 20s, know they need some proven Volvo Ocean Race know-how if they are to contest the title seriously against event veterans who have taken part up to seven times before.

                            As part of a pre-planned, collaborative mentoring scheme which is thought to be the first of it kind in the 41-year history of the classic event, the Alvimedica sailors will be tapping the experience of five leading Volvo Ocean Race heroes to improve their chances of success.

                            The team will be revealing the identities of four of these later but have certainly kicked off the scheme in style with one of the biggest names in the event’s history.

                            “We decided to take our courage in our hands and ask the best in the business – in our eyes – to help us out and give us the benefit of his huge knowledge,” said Enright.

                            Full backing

                            “We approached the legendary Paul Cayard, who won the Race back in 1997-98, and is one of the biggest names ever to compete. What he doesn’t know about the Volvo Ocean Race and sailing – both offshore and in-port – isn’t worth knowing.”

                            With the full backing of their sponsors Alvimedica, the young Turkey-based medical devices company which is also moving into challenging new waters with a new global sales push, fellow American Cayard agreed to join them for a sailing master class.

                            Said Cayard, 54, who won the Race in his Volvo Ocean Race debut on board EF Language: “These guys remind me of me in so many ways when I started out. Sure, they’re green at this level but my goodness, they’re open to learning everything they can and we had a blast in the five days we spent together in Cascais (near Lisbon, Portugal) earlier this month.”

                            The move to approach Cayard, also a legend in America’s Cup sailing and a former Olympian, surprised many of their seasoned Race rivals but he certainly admired the chutzpah of Enright and Towill.

                            “These boys have already shown guts galore in simply getting this campaign off the ground and they’ll need more sailing around the world. They need to think out of the box like this. We won on EF Language by being innovative and flexible in keeping changing tactics and Team Alvimedica are taking the same route.”

                            “We wanted to find a crew full of sailors who reflect what we stand for as a company – young, agile, courageous, innovative, – but at the same time collaborative and caring,” said Anna Malm Bernsten, the Campaign Director for Team Alvimedica.

                            “This story encapsulates all those qualities. Cayard can be a frightening guy when he’s yelling instructions to our young lads but wow, his heart is made of gold. Not many people with his experience would be willing to drop everything for five days to help out our boys like this,” she continued.

                            The 38,739-nautical mile Volvo Ocean Race kicks off on October 4 with the first in-port race in Alicante, Spain – home of the race – before the first leg to Cape Town begins exactly a week later.

                            It concludes on June 27, 2015 with the in-port race of Gothenburg, Sweden having visited nine other ports around the world in between (see editors’ notes).
                   ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~


                            • #44
                              Pierre must have some wild stories for the greenhorns!


                              • #45
                                Stu Bannatyne Joins Team Alvimedica for Tans Atlantic Crossing

                                TEAM ALVIMEDICA NEWS: Biggest test yet for young crew of Team Alvimedica as they set off for Newport

                                Lisbon, Portugal - Team Alvimedica set out for the biggest test yet of the young crew when they leave Lisbon on Friday, bound for Newport, Rhode Island across the Atlantic in preparation for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.

                                They are the new kids on the block in the biggest offshore challenge in sailing but are already soaking up experience thanks to a mentoring scheme put in place by team management.

                                Earlier this month, the crew used the skills and know-how of former race winner Paul Cayard to show them the ropes in their new Volvo Ocean 65 and for the trip across the Atlantic they will be receiving the wise advice of New Zealand’s Stu Bannatyne.

                                Bannatyne is one of the most successful sailors ever to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race, formerly the Whitbread Round the World Race.

                                He has been on the winning boat three times out of the six times he has competed, including victory in his debut appearance in 1993-94 on NZ Endeavour, skippered by another race legend Grant Dalton.

                                Bannatyne also triumphed as watch captain on illbruck in 2001-02 and Ericsson 4 in 2008-09. He finished second on board CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand in the last Race in 2011-12.

                                “It was great having Paul Cayard at our first session and it will be fantastic having someone like Stu as our second. Both of them bring a lot to the table and it’s up to us to absorb each of their different perspectives,” said delighted Team Alvimedica skipper Charlie Enright.

                                “Stu comes across as a hardened race veteran, because he is, but that hasn’t stopped him from generously sharing his experiences with us. We’re really lucky to have him with us”.

                                Enright and his fellow crewmember Mark Towill have already enjoyed an incredible journey to reach the start line of the Volvo Ocean Race that begins with the Alicante in-port race on October 4 and then leaves for the first leg to Cape Town exactly a week later.

                                They first met as the young stars of the Disney movie Morning Light seven years ago and hatched a dream to compete in the Volvo Ocean Race after learning more about the event from several race veterans on the film set.

                                Thanks to the backing of Alvimedica, a European-based medical device company with head quarters in Istanbul with equally big ambitions to build a global reputation as the best in their business, their dream to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race has come true.

                                Bannatyne has certainly been impressed by what he’s seen so far of Enright, Towill and their young crew-mates who are trying out during the Atlantic voyage to complete the rest of the final line-up.

                                “I have been impressed so far with the professionalism and enthusiasm that Charlie and his young team have approached their campaign. Their energy to innovate and push hard for the best solutions in the programme has been great to see and I am really looking forward to working with them on this Transatlantic session”

                                The team management and Alvimedica plan to introduce more legendary names from the race’s history to give the youngsters – both Enright and Towill are in their 20s – an extra edge against rivals who are double their age and have at least double their offshore experience.

                                “In Alvimedica we have high ambitions in what we do. We always seek the best expertise worldwide within our field, to develop long lasting world-class collaboration. Using that same mindset for Team Alvimedica comes naturally as we care for our crew and their performance as if they were our family members. It is in our DNA,” said Anna Malm Bernsten, Campaign Director of Team Alvimedica.
                       ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~