From top: Leg 9 start day, Newport to Cardiff, May 20, 2018. Photo by Ugo Fonolla/Volvo Ocean Race; Leg 6, Hong Kong to Auckland, February 18, 2018. Day 12 on board Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag with John Fisher (1970-2018) at the helm. Sadly underlining just how dangerous this race is, Fisher was swept overboard on March 26 in gale force conditions in the Southern Ocean and never recovered. Photo by Jeremie Lecaudey/Volvo Ocean Race; Leg 2 start day, Lisbon to Cape Town, November 5, 2017. Dongfeng Race Team drone shot from above. Photo by Eloi Stichelbaut/Dongfeng Race Team
Crossing the Atlantic Ocean as I write are 7 race boats sailing from Newport, RI to Cardiff, Wales in the 9th leg of the Volvo Ocean Race. With 11 legs in total, ranging from approximately 3 to 22 days at sea, the Volvo Ocean Race is described as the longest and toughest professional sporting event in the world. The race covers 45,000 nautical miles that cross four oceans, touch six continents, and visits 12 landmark Host Cities. What began in October of 2017 in Alicante, Spain will finish in The Hague in the Netherlands at the end of June 2018 in what will have been an 9-month test of endurance in some of the most grueling conditions imaginable.
Since 1973, the Volvo Ocean Race has provided the ultimate test of teamwork and adventure. Originally known as the Whitbread Around The World Race, Volvo took it over in 1998. The race is held every three years, and for more than four decades has held an almost mythical power over some the sport’s greatest. In the current era of One Design racing, every team races the exact same Volvo Ocean 65, ensuring the race is all about the sailing and not about the boat. There is no prize money awarded for the relentless intensity and perseverance required in this round-the-clock pursuit, but for a sailor to see their name etched into one of the silver rings of the Volvo Ocean Race Trophy has a value beyond compare. Put simply, the Volvo Ocean Race is an obsession many of the world’s best sailors have dedicated years of their lives trying to win. Read More