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Displaying items by tag: The Ocean Race Europe

Following its start from Lorient in France at the end of May, the inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe will stop in Cascais, bringing the top international offshore racing teams in the world to Portugal.

Located 30km west of Lisbon, Cascais is a historic and cosmopolitan seaside resort on the edge of the Tagus estuary, between the Sintra mountains and the Atlantic Ocean.

The Ocean Race Europe will feature the record-breaking, one-design VO65 fleet which produced the closest edition of The Ocean Race in history in 2017-18. The teams are seeing the event as the first step on their journey towards the next edition of The Ocean Race round-the-world race in 2022-23.

And for the first time, the foiling IMOCA fleet will participate in a competition under The Ocean Race banner. The IMOCA teams bring a high-tech component to the event, showcasing the latest foiling technology.

“The Ocean Race Europe will surely provide us with great competition on the water. But it is also an opportunity for our wonderful sport to inspire towards a greater purpose,” said Richard Brisius, race chairman of The Ocean Race.

“We are united in driving action towards the promotion of ocean health and we look forward to working on this with all of our friends and partners in Cascais when we are in Portugal this June.”

The home team in Cascais, the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team, was the first VO65 team to confirm its entry in the European race back in January and The Mirpuri Foundation will host the event from its training base at the Clube Naval de Cascais.

Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team training off Portugal (Photo: Marc Bow)Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team training off Portugal | Photo: Marc Bow

Paulo Mirpuri is the founder of the Mirpuri Foundation, which has been a driving force in bringing The Ocean Race Europe to Cascais. He said: “We are proud to welcome The Ocean Race Europe to Cascais and to host the stopover in our home port with our friends at Clube Naval de Cascais. This is the first time that an Ocean Race event has come to Cascais, having come to Lisbon in the past.

“Today’s announcement is the culmination of an enormous amount of work from many different parties. We have worked hard with the organisers of the race to bring The Ocean Race Europe to Cascais, our home, and we will have many more developments to share very soon.

“This will be a spectacular race after a difficult year for so many people and we cannot wait to welcome the fleet to Portugal.”

Cascais is known as ‘the charm of the Atlantic’ and provides direct access to a prime racing playground just off the main beach and the Cascais Marina area.

"Cascais is very proud to be one of the cities chosen to become a stopover for The Ocean Race Europe,” said Deputy Mayor Miguel Pinto Luz. “Sailing is a part of our identity and hosting the best regattas in the world is now a tradition here.

“We consider Cascais the best place to live - for one day or for a lifetime. And if you are a sailor, this is paradise…one of the best regatta locations in the world, in front of our beautiful Bay.”

Yoann Richomme, skipper of the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team agrees, saying: “It will be an honour to lead ‘Racing For The Planet’ and our crew out from my home in Lorient and into our home port of Cascais this spring, a place we have seen many times from our boat, but never surrounded by such an incredible fleet.

“It will be a wonderful occasion for everyone involved. There is no doubt, The Mirpuri Foundation’s passion for sailing will be felt by everyone.”

The Ocean Race Europe will start from Lorient, France, over the final weekend of May, bringing the teams south across the Bay of Biscay, into the Atlantic and the stop in Cascais.

From there the two fleets will race into the Mediterranean. The Ocean Race Europe will finish in Genoa, Italy in the third week of June, with a further stop along the route in the Med to be confirmed shortly.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

The French town of Lorient in Brittany has been chosen as the starting point for The Ocean Race Europe.

The iconic port, in the heart of the renowned Bretagne Sailing Valley, will host the start for both the IMOCA and VO65 fleets as they charge south across the Bay of Biscay.

This will mark the first racing under The Ocean Race banner for the high-tech IMOCA class boats and the one-design VO65 class.

For the teams, The Ocean Race Europe will be the first step on the journey towards the 2022-23 edition of The Ocean Race round-the-world event — and for some IMOCA teams for the Vendee Globe 2024 as well.

“Lorient has been an important part of the history of The Ocean Race, as a much-loved stopover port in 2011-12 and 2014-15,” said Johan Salen, managing director of The Ocean Race.

“Now Lorient becomes the starting port for a new, Europe-oriented event, and a fresh, exciting story begins. We are racing from the heart of what we call the French Sailing Valley and into the heart of Europe, providing a platform for extraordinary sport and driving change towards a healthier planet along the way.”

The Ocean Race Europe brings together the top international sailors and teams from the two classes that compete in the next around the world race, the VO65s and the IMOCA 60s.

The two fleets will race in a fully crewed configuration in stages between iconic European cities, from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea and a finish in Genoa, Italy in the third week of June.

Lorient will host the start over the last weekend in May. As the home port for many IMOCAs, Lorient La Base is well positioned to welcome the race boats and teams ahead of the start of The Ocean Race Europe.

“Lorient La Base is proud to host the start of The Ocean Race Europe. With almost 50 local companies related to offshore sailing, Lorient Agglomération is a European renowned territory of nautical excellence,” said Fabrice Loher, the president of the Lorient Agglomération and Mayor of Lorient.

“Lorient La Base has all the advantages of a consolidated ecosystem to support the greatest sailing teams. This is why the top skippers chose Lorient La Base as their home port.

“The start of The Ocean Race Europe is a new step to consolidate the reputation of the city as a host port for amazing offshore sailing races.”

The fleets will assemble in Lorient ahead of the start from Friday 28 May.

Prior to arriving in Brittany, the VO65 fleet will participate in The Ocean Race Europe Prologue event, beginning in the Baltic Sea in early May and winding south before gathering at Lorient La Base at the end of the month, alongside the IMOCA fleet.

Organisers of The Ocean Race Europe are prioritising the health and safety of all competitors and stakeholders and will follow all relevant regulations and advisories with respect to COVID-19.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

The first edition of The Ocean Race Europe will finish in Genoa, Italy this June — two years before it does the honours as home of the Grand Finale of the 2022-23 round-the-world race.

Racing will start from Brittany on France’s Atlantic coast at the end of May, with teams racing in stages to the finish in Genoa in the third week of June.

The remaining iconic cities hosting the race will be revealed in turn, organisers stated.

“In The Ocean Race Europe we are realising a dream of many — a race between European cities with engaged fans and athletes achieving the extraordinary while driving change for a healthier planet,” The Ocean Race chairman Richard Brisius said.

“We understand the importance of teamwork, and collectively we back the EU work for green transition, digitalisation and unity.

“Our friends and partners in Genova [Genoa] also really understand the value of the environment in helping to support the economy and well-being of people. We look forward to working together to make The Ocean Race Europe a success.”

Marco Bucci, Mayor of Genoa, added: “We’re proud to host the inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe — it is undoubtedly going to be ‘the’ event of the 2021 offshore sailing circuit.

Team AkzoNobel’s VO65 in Genoa for The Ocean Race’s corporate event in September 2019 (Maria Muina/The Ocean Race)Team AkzoNobel’s VO65 in Genoa for The Ocean Race’s corporate event in September 2019 | Maria Muina/The Ocean Race

“Genova will take centre stage, having the opportunity to celebrate its traditions and ambitions, moving towards a future of great international events. Genova can do it — our great facilities make for a perfect venue to host events of this level.

“Furthermore, behind the coastal infrastructure, the city offers a unique artistic and tourism hub, ready to welcome Italian and international fans of our sport, which is now living a golden moment for the public and in the media alike.”

The Ocean Race Europe is open to VO65 and IMOCA class yachts. The VO65 fleet will also participate in The Ocean Race Europe Prologue event starting in the Baltic Sea in early May.

“For the VO65 teams, The Prologue and The Ocean Race Europe itself marks the start of our journey towards The Ocean Race around the world in 2022-23,” said Bouwe Bekking, an eight-time veteran of The Ocean Race.

“Whether we are trialling new crew or equipment, or using the event for fundraising and sponsorship, it’s a critical first step on the road to The Ocean Race and an opportunity for all of us to feel the pull of this great race once again.”

“The Ocean Race Europe will be a good test for our team to compete with other similar boats and a great opportunity to get racing in our IMOCA again,” said Nicolas Troussel, skipper of the CORUM L’Épargne Sailing Team in announcing his entry in the IMOCA fleet last week, which followed Mirpuri Foundation’s official entry in January.

Organisers of The Ocean Race Europe are prioritising the health and safety of all competitors and stakeholders and will follow all relevant regulations and advisories with respect to COVID-19.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

The Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team has become the first to enter The Ocean Race Europe, following the opening of the entry period.

The inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe is scheduled to take place in late spring this year and is open to VO65 and IMOCA 60 teams.

It will feature racing from the Atlantic coast of Europe into the Mediterranean, with up to four stops along the way. The full race course will be released shortly.

Based out of Cascais in Portugal, the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team will compete on board their Racing for the Planet boat, in the VO65 class — the record-breaking, one-design offshore racing boats that produced the closest edition of The Ocean Race in history in 2017-18.

“We are excited to confirm our participation in The Ocean Race Europe,” said Yoann Richomme, skipper with the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team.

“It will be a challenging race in its own right and one that is worthy of our focus and application. Our approach to the European race doesn’t differ from The Ocean Race; we are here to win and our preparation reflects that.

Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team’s VO65, Racing for the Planet

“We are putting together a team of experienced sailors and shore crew and we can’t wait to get out on the water.”

“Officially lodging our entry for The Ocean Race Europe is a significant milestone for the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team,” added Paulo Mirpuri, founder of the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team.

“We have all faced many challenges over the past 12 months and sport will continue to play a critical role in our recovery. As we continue the fight against Covid-19 we must not forget the battle we are all facing against climate change.

“For us our message doesn’t change, we are ‘Racing For The Planet’.”

Race director Phil Lawrence took the time to welcome the first entrants. “This is a team with an ambition to perform at the highest levels on and off the water, with a strong commitment to ‘Racing For The Planet’ and we’re looking forward to seeing them on the start line in May,” he said.

The Ocean Race Europe is scheduled to take place in May/June this year. Event organisers will prioritise the health and safety of all participants, the public and all stakeholders and will adhere to all regulations and protocols with respect to COVID-19.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

The inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe, scheduled to start late in the spring of 2021, will bring international top-flight, competitive ocean racing to up to five European cities.

And organisers add that the event will engage with European citizens to enhance the ambitious green transition and showcase the power of digital transformation.

The Ocean Race Europe will see crew members from all over the world racing in foiling IMOCA 60s and one-design VO65s racing from the North Atlantic coast of Europe into the Mediterranean Sea, on a race course of up to five legs, each to be scored equally. There will be winners and prizes in each class.

“The Ocean Race Europe, provisionally scheduled to run over the month of June, fits well in the racing calendar in 2021 and provides our teams with competitive, meaningful racing next year, adding continuity to their racing programmes,” said Johan Salén, managing director of The Ocean Race.

“As a new event, it has been important that we have support from teams and sailors for this project to get off the ground, and the feedback to date has been extremely positive.”

On shore, there will be public activities within each host city, along with team promotional and hospitality events. The Ocean Race Europe will put the health of the sailors, teams and public as a top priority and respect all COVID-19 regulations in each city visited.

The work started by the award-winning sustainability programme of the 2017-18 Race continues as part of The Ocean Race Europe and beyond. The Racing with Purpose programme includes advocacy, science, learning and sustainable event excellence.

Ocean health and climate change are inextricably linked. The Ocean Race Europe will be advocating for climate action, telling the story of climate change through a blue lens.

As part of the UNFCCC’s Sports for Climate Action framework, The Ocean Race joins forces with the sports sector in the global race towards net zero emissions by 2030.

‘This event has been inspired by, and will demonstrate, the values and spirit of European co-operation and identity’

And the plan for The Ocean Race is not to just reach net zero emissions, but be truly restorative and be climate positive, its organisers say.

“As sailors, we instinctively know that protecting and restoring a resource as central to life as the ocean is essential to our collective future,” said Richard Brisius, race chairman of The Ocean Race.

“With our sailors, teams, cities and stakeholders, we will continue our efforts to promote a healthy and abundant ocean, and The Ocean Race Europe fits into this strategy.

“This event has been inspired by, and will demonstrate, the values and spirit of European co-operation and identity,” he added. “The Ocean Race Europe, passing through several member countries, will in itself be a showcase of open borders, the European Green Deal and the power of digital transformation, as well as the European mindset of working positively and proactively across national borders to address common challenges.”

The inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe in 2021 leads off a 10-year calendar of racing activity that includes confirmed editions of the iconic, fully-crewed, around the world event — The Ocean Race — every four years, beginning in 2022-23.

On a call with registered teams last Wednesday 7 October, The Ocean Race organisers updated teams about progress around The Ocean Race Europe, and informed the 60-plus attendees about an amendment to the Notice of Race that will be issued for The Ocean Race.

It will include a change to the crew configuration for the IMOCA 60s, which reduces the number of crew on board by one, to four crew members (with at least one woman) or five crew members (with at least four women). In both scenarios, each team must additionally have a dedicated on-board reporter.

This comes as a positive response to a request from the IMOCA Class Association, and follows consultation with their membership.

“The goal is to make it easier for existing boats and sailors, who are already active in the IMOCA fleet, to compete in The Ocean Race,” said Antoine Mermod, president of the IMOCA Class Association. “A common feedback was to reduce the number of crew and we are pleased to see this change.”

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

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