New format for Barcelona World Race

Published on December 15th, 2017

The doublehanded Barcelona World Race 2018/19 has revealed a new format for the fourth edition of the round the world challenge in IMOCA 60 boats.

From the start in Barcelona, Spain on January 12, for the first time the race will be making an obligatory stopover in Sydney, Australia. This international move is a significant step for the regatta and the class globally.

The upcoming edition has already been given an enthusiastic response from international top flight offshore sailors with 16 teams adding the event to their racing schedule, 11 of which already have an IMOCA 60. The regatta has received interest from 26 international sailors who have contacted the Race Management team for information. The goal is for between 10 and 11 boats to participate.

The new relationship with Sydney will take Barcelona even further: “Until now we haven’t had an extra visibility platform for sponsors, but now we can offer that with the Sydney stopover. The city is a reference point which will make the regatta even more attractive to sponsors.”

The first leg, Barcelona to Sydney, some 13,500 nautical miles in length, is set to finish at Sydney towards the end of February. The second leg, 12,500 nautical miles in length, starts at Sydney on March 9 and should finish at Barcelona in mid-April. An option will exist for a co-skipper substitution in Sydney.

Also, to ensure that teams have the greatest possibilities of finishing the race, consideration is being given an authorized technical stopover of a maximum of 48 hours on each leg.

Antoine Mermod, the IMOCA class president, is pleased with how the calendar is looking. “We now have two star events: the Vendée Globe, a solo race, and the Barcelona World Race with two crew; which means a round the world regatta every two years. This is a formula which has worked very well and has received a great response from sailors and sponsors.

Marcus Hutchinson, well-known for his successful career in race and team management, expects the new format to be a positive. “This change, with two legs, is a very important move forward in the internationalisation of the IMOCA Class.”

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About the Barcelona World Race
The Barcelona World Race is a double-handed (two crew – skipper and co-skipper) round the world regatta, starting and finishing in Barcelona, with two legs: Barcelona – Sydney – Barcelona. The regatta turned 10 years old this November 2017 and notching up three editions so far, it has become a cornerstone event in the worldwide transoceanic yacht racing calendar.

The yachts race round the world on a route some of 26,000 nautical miles (48,152 km) in length. The first edition was held in 2007/08; the second in 2010/11 and the third in 2014/15. Until now the regatta was non-stop, making the brand-new stopover in Sydney an exciting new racing feature.

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