Course set for The Ocean Race Europe
Published on April 16th, 2021
The Ocean Race Europe will visit in Alicante, with the Spanish city confirmed as the fourth host city for the inaugural event to be held May/June 2021. Alicante joins the start port of Lorient, France; Cascais, Portugal; and the finish in Genova, Italy.
Alicante is very familiar territory for The Ocean Race, as the home of both the race headquarters and the venue for each of the around the world race starts since 2008.
The Ocean Race Europe is a new event on the offshore sailing calendar, open to the one-design VO65 class and teams sailing in a fully-crewed configuration in the IMOCA 60s. The teams will race up to Alicante from Cascais on the second leg of the Race and will be hosted at the port of Alicante in mid June.
“We look forward to bringing The Ocean Race Europe to Alicante,” said Regatta Director Phil Lawrence. “This will allow fans in our home port to experience a taste of racing before the around the world race start in October 2022.”
The Ocean Race Europe is providing a bridge event for 2022-23 The Ocean Race (formerly Volvo Ocean Race) which was postponed one year due to COVID-19, and leads off a ten-year calendar of racing activity that includes confirmed editions of the fully-crewed, around the world event – The Ocean Race – every four years, beginning now in 2022-23.
“Our Race HQ in Alicante will be an important centre for The Ocean Race Europe,” said Managing Directory Johan Salen. “Not only will Alicante host a stopover, but our Race Headquarters will serve as the hub for the media content and Race Management during The Ocean Race Europe.”
With the Alicante stop confirmed as the final piece of the race course puzzle, the full schedule for The Ocean Race Europe, including coastal races, will be released in the coming days.
The Organisers of The Ocean Race Europe are prioritising the health and safety of all competitors and stakeholders and will follow all relevant regulations and advisories with respect to Covid-19.
Here was the plan prior to the 2022-23 postponement:
The Ocean Race 2021-22 (formerly 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.