It's been a long dry spell since the last Volvo Ocean Race (VOR), but teams are gearing up for the start of the 2011/2012 edition, which kicks off this fall. Emirates Team New Zealand recently launched (and christened) their new VO70 (see our coverage in this issue), Puma Ocean Racing is about to launch their new ride (more, as it becomes known), and now Telefonica has started to get more public about their campaign, which will be their third attempt at winning this prestigious around-the-world event. 'The Volvo Ocean Race is the most important offshore race in the world and, along with the America's Cup, it is one of the only two regattas among the ten most watched sporting events in the world,' said Pedro Campos, CEO of Team Telefonica. 'The Volvo Ocean Race is probably the longest, hardest and most difficult and extreme of any sport, and just taking part in it means a great challenge for any country.' The team is currently building their new VO70, Telefonica, in Valencia, Spain. Given their third-place finish in the last edition of the VOR, look for this team to be strong, experienced and constantly pressing for the top of the leader board.
Meanwhile, in the double-handed, nonstop Barcelona World Race (BWR), Dee Caffari and Anna Cordella, aboard Gaes are on the cusp of making sailing history. While the duo still needs to sail a few more miles to get across the finish line, the team should finish sometime today. Cordella will go down in the record books as the first Spanish woman to race nonstop around the world, while Caffari will be completing a heady fourth circumnavigation; moreover, the two are the first all-female team to have completed the BWR. 'We are very tired physically, it has been quite demanding with the sail changes and the maneuvers,' said Caffari. 'We kind of expected that, so we are trying to rest while we can. But really we are also just enjoying the sailing. The sun is out. The water is flat and if you are going to have a last day's sailing [that's] going to take a little longer, these are perfect conditions. We have prepared for our arrival, we have washed our hair, and done our hair and stuff, we will be smelling better than anyone would expect.' Read the full report inside this issue.
Oracle Racing - AC45 training - Sailing on the edge - AC45 heads down the mine Oracle Racing - copyright
Cup fans, pay attention to Oracle Racing's video and still images of an AC45 wiping out at speed. A disaster? Apparently not: 'We were actually happy afterward,' said Oracle Racing's Dirk de Ridder. 'We've done similar things with other 40-footers and had bad results. We're very happy we could get out of it. Nothing was damaged. The wing hit the shrouds very hard, but there was no damage. It was a very good day in the end.' Also, check out Oracle Racing's report on Team Korea, the first (South) Korean team to compete for the Cup.
Finally, today marks the start of Act 2 of the Extreme Sailing Series, which is being held in Qingdao, China. Eleven teams will be scorching their Extreme 40 cats around the racecourse, no doubt engaging in tight racing and generating great images, so stay tuned for reports and media updates as the action unfolds.
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