Course complete for The Ocean Race
Published on March 12th, 2020
The next edition of The Ocean Race, scheduled to start in October 2021 from Alicante, Spain, will visit 10 international cities, including the start port and the Grand Finale finish in Genoa, Italy in the summer of 2022.
For the first time, the 14th edition of this crewed, around the world contest is now open to the high-tech, foiling IMOCA 60 class, in addition to the one-design VO65 boats used in the two previous races.
“As we open up the design and innovation elements of the race again with the IMOCA class, confirming the race route for our teams has taken on an added importance as the designers look to optimize performance for the conditions,” said Johan Salén, the Managing Director of The Ocean Race.
“This route is more compact at 38,000 nautical miles and with two less stopovers compared with the last race but it includes two significant Southern Ocean legs, where crews on both the IMOCA 60s and the VO65s will have an opportunity to add their stories to the legend of this race.”
Race Route for The Ocean Race 2021-22:
Alicante, Spain – Race Start
Cape Town, South Africa
Auckland, New Zealand
Newport, RI, USA
The Hague, Netherlands
Genoa, Italy* – The Grand Finale
* New host city
“This new race route respects our heritage as an event that crosses the world’s oceans, leaving the great capes of the southern hemisphere to port, and diving into the Southern Ocean on the approach to the iconic Cape Horn,” said Richard Brisius, Race Chairman of The Ocean Race.
“With seven returning stopovers and three new host cities, there is a good balance between stability and exploration, as the route will take us through the Java Sea, near Indonesia, for the first time.
“As ever, The Ocean Race appeals to athletes and teams who want to compete against the best in the world and add their name to the list of the legends of our sport who have defined their careers by taking on this incredible challenge.”
One of those sailors is Carolijn Brouwer (NED), who became one of the first women to win The Ocean Race as part of the victorious Dongfeng Race Team in the last race. In the 2021-22 edition, all race teams, in both classes, will be required to have female crew members.
“To lift The Ocean Race trophy with Dongfeng Race Team in 2017-18 was a dream come true for myself and the team, and it’s an honour to be counted amongst so many legends of the sport as a winner of this amazing race,” Brouwer said.
“The 2021-22 race course keeps the Southern Ocean at the heart of the race, and the new foiling IMOCA boats plus the returning VO65s means more epic racing and great human stories.”
The introduction of the IMOCA fleet into The Ocean Race presents a new opportunity for sailors to race in the world’s most challenging and competitive fully-crewed event. Paul Meilhat, the winner of the 2018 Route du Rhum and the current leader of the IMOCA sailor rankings, is among those looking to make the transition.
“The Ocean Race is one of the most global events in sport, and the racecourse for 2021-22 underlines why it is so special – with some of the best offshore sailing conditions around, and a massive commercial reach touching six continents,” he said.
“It has long been my dream to compete in The Ocean Race and test myself against the best sailors in one of the most challenging races in the sport.”
The Ocean Race 2021-22 (formerly The Volvo Ocean Race) will be raced in two classes of boats: the high-performance, foiling, IMOCA 60 class and the one-design VO65 class which has been used for the last two editions of the race. Entries in the IMOCA 60 class will compete for The Ocean Race trophy, while those racing the VO65s will chase the Ocean Challenge Trophy.
Ten Stopovers for 14th Edition:
• Alicante, Spain: This historic Mediterranean port will host the start for the fifth consecutive edition in the autumn of 2021.
• Cabo Verde: More accustomed to having offshore teams sail by, or stop for repair, this archipelago of ten volcanic islands in the central Atlantic Ocean will become just the second African venue the race has ever visited and the first West African nation to host the event. Details.
• Cape Town, South Africa: Located on the shore of Table Bay, Cape Town, as the oldest urban area in South Africa, was developed by the United East India Company (VOC) as a supply station for Dutch ships sailing to East Africa, India, and the Far East. Located at latitude 33.55° S, it’s approximately the same as Sydney and Buenos Aires and equivalent to Casablanca and Los Angeles in the northern hemisphere. Details.
• Shenzhen, China: Located in the southeast, the city is a modern metropolis that links Hong Kong to China’s mainland. It’s known for its shopping destinations and features contemporary buildings, such as the 600m-tall skyscraper Ping An International Finance Centre, and a number of amusement parks. The city is a leading global technology hub and was one of the fastest-growing cities in the world in the 1990s and the 2000s. Details.
• Auckland, New Zealand: European, Polynesian, Asian, and strong Maori heritages give Auckland its distinctive culture. Located in the North Island of New Zealand, it is the most populous urban area in the country with an urban population of around 1,570,100. Details.
• Itajaí, Brazil: To the south of Rio de Janeiro, Itajaí was founded in the mid-19th century by German and Italian colonists, and is now the commercial centre and Atlantic port for an agricultural region drained by the Itajaí River and its tributaries. Details.
• Newport, USA: Located on Aquidneck Island, Newport is 74 miles south of Boston and 180 miles northeast of New York City. It is known as a New England summer resort and is famous for its historic mansions and its rich sailing history. It was the location of every challenge to the America’s Cup between 1930 and 1983. It is also the home of Naval Station Newport, which houses the United States Naval War College, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, and an important Navy training center. This is the third consecutive edition of the race to stop in Newport. Details.
• Aarhus, Denmark: The course comes to the east coast of the Jutland peninsula during the spring of 2022, following a popular ‘Fly-By’ of the city during the final leg of the 2017-18 edition of the Race. Details.
• The Hague, Netherlands: This city along the North Sea coast will welcome the race for a third consecutive time, first coming as a ‘pitstop’ on the final leg of the 2014-15 edition and as the final finish port for the 2017-18 race. Details.
• Genoa, Italy: As the birthplace of Christopher Columbus, this first-time race host is Italy’s largest sea port yet remains full of grandeur as the gateway to the Riviera while offering weighty architectural heritage. Details.
• IMOCA – Team Malizia (GER)- Boris Herrmann (GER)
• VO65 – Racing For The Planet (POR)
• IMOCA – Paul Meilhat (FRA)
• IMOCA – 11th Hour Racing (USA) – Charlie Enright & Mark Towill (USA)
Source: The Ocean Race