Volvo Ocean Race: It’s all about the stopover

Published on May 6th, 2014

Sail Newport and Heineken have announced that Heineken is the first Official Partner of the Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover. The sailing event, scheduled for May 5-17, 2015, is the only North American stopover during the Volvo Ocean Race’s nine-month circumnavigation of the globe.

“The Volvo Ocean Race is the world’s most prestigious ocean sailboat race and sponsorship of the Newport stopover provides a North American and global promotional platform for Heineken. The Volvo is one of the most challenging sporting endeavors in the world, requiring extreme levels of courage, strength, endurance and intelligence,” says Brad Read, executive director of Sail Newport and director of the Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover.

As an official stopover partner, Heineken will have exclusive rights and designation as the official beer of the 12-day public event. In addition, Heineken will have branding rights with the event, media content, sponsorship of in-shore racing, hospitality and sponsorship of the restart when the global marathon leaves Newport for the transatlantic leg to Lisbon, Portugal, on May 17, 2015.

“Heineken has been a long-time supporter of the sailing community globally, and since this race is stopping in beautiful New England, we jumped at the chance to continue our presence in this space and celebrate the sport.” says John Doolan, Heineken USA Northeast Vice President.

Read adds, “This is an innovative race and Heineken is an innovative company with a dedication to the spirit of competition. When the boats finish their 4,000-mile trek from Brazil, Heineken will help us celebrate the arrival of these athletes who will have conquered severe weather, extreme human challenges and grueling ocean race conditions.”

Particular excitement will surround the arrival of U.S. Skipper Charlie Enright’s (Bristol, RI, USA) Team Alvimedica. Enright will sail with some crew members from his All American Ocean Racing Team including Mark Towill (Hawaii) who will be celebrated as they arrive in their home country for a practice leg in early June 2014 and in May 2015 for the Newport Stopover.

Several other American sailors will participate in the race; each will have a special U.S. welcome. The all-female Team SCA is the first all-women’s team to compete in the Race since 2001-02 and they will have Sally Barkow (Wisconsin) and Sara Hastreiter (South Dakota) onboard.

The boats are expected to arrive in the U.S. in the first week of May 2015. A 12-day public festival will celebrate the stopover, with the massive race boats on display at Sail Newport in Fort Adams State Park. A shore side sailing village will be open to the public, free of charge, where they will be able to see the international team compounds and the operations of the shore teams in technical and sail loft areas. In addition, the sailing village will include interactive exhibits, sponsor pavilions, car and truck displays, entertainment, marine education activities, food and the Heineken beer garden.

The Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover Village will be located next to where the boats will dock at Sail Newport in Fort Adams State Park. The area is immediately adjacent to the race course where the boats will compete for in-shore race points.

During the Newport visit, all of the boats will also participate in training, pro-am and in-shore racing within yards of the shoreline for optimal spectator viewing during the festival at Fort Adams State Park. Expert commentary will also provide an entertaining spectator opportunity for visitors to the race village.

The Race will start in October 2014 from Alicante, Spain on its 38,739-nautical mile route with stopovers in Cape Town (South Africa), Abu Dhabi (UAE), Sanya (China), Auckland (New Zealand), Itajai (Brazil) and then Newport. After an approximate two-week stay in Newport, Rhode Island, USA, the fleet then races from Newport to Lisbon (Portugal) and then Lorient (France). After Lorient, a 24-hour pit stop will be made in the Hague (Netherlands) and then the teams will make their final sprint to the finish line in Gothenburg (Sweden), the Swedish home of Volvo, in July of 2015.

Heineken USA has a long history of sponsoring Sail Newport events. The non-profit organization hosts the annual Newport Regatta every July. For more than 15 years, Heineken has been the official beer sponsor for the premiere New England regatta which annually attracts over 1,000 sailors from an average of 16 states and four countries. The 2015 Newport Regatta will also feature Heineken as the official beer partner during its three-day event, July 11-13, 2014 at Sail Newport.

Click here to stay connected with Sail Newport and the Volvo Ocean Race, with updates sent as either email or text messages (or both) directly to your mobile device.

Source: Sail Newport

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