Team Russia’s Volvo 70, KOTSATKA, reached Alicante in Spain on Monday morning to join the rest of the teams preparing for the 2008 Volvo Ocean Race (formerly known as the Whitbread Round the World Race). The event begins with an in-port race on 4th October before the first leg of their 10 leg race covering nearly 37,000 nautical miles (42,600 miles) of open ocean and 7 in-port races. The gruelling race will see the 8 teams currently entered travel southwards from Spain to encompass Africa, Asia, South and North America before heading back to Europe and finishing in St Petersburg on 27th June 2009.
When asked why would someone want to endure 10 months of crampt living, with little to no sleep, freeze-dried food and the unforgiving, constant motion of the ocean, the skipper of the Chinese-Irish entry GREEN DRAGON, Ian Walker summed it up by saying:
‘The answer is simple “it is a chance in a lifetime to be part of an incredible sporting event and to pit ourselves against some of the best sailors in the world“ we all want to win. We have a fantastic team both ashore and afloat, and we will share life-changing experiences over the next 10 months.’
All the boats have had to endure a 2,000 nautical mile race qualification, providing many teams with their first chance to really test to the yachts and their sailing tenacity. There are now 8 teams competing after the announcement of the Dutch Team Delta Lloyd joining the line up. The entries:
DELTA LLOYD, Netherlands
ERICSSON RACING TEAM INTERNATIONAL, Sweden
ERICSSON RACING TEAM NORDIC, Sweden
GREEN DRAGON, China-Ireland
PUMA OCEAN RACING, USA
TEAM RUSSIA, Russia
TELEFONICA BLACK, Spain
TELEFONICA BLUE, Spain
The Volvo Ocean Race is this year set to be a spectacle of some of the best sailing to be seen in the oceans and seas of the world, pitting the best talent against the elements and testing the determination and grit of humans living on the edge.
Some information courtesy of Sail-World.com