The organizers have now officially started to recruit new teams for the upcoming Volvo Ocean Race 2021/22: With a preliminary "Notice of Race" and the keywords "Technology", "Diversity" and "Sustainability", the format of the future is taking shape at. The preliminary "Notice of Race" has not been published, but is available to YACHT online upon request in Alicante. According to regatta director Phil Lawrence, the 16-page work initially only represents a vision that is still to be discussed with all interest groups.
The three best skippers of the last edition: Xabí Fernandez (Mapfre), Bouwe Bekking (Brunel) and Charles Caudrelier (Dongfeng). Which of them will run again in 2021?
It had already been decided that the 14th edition of the marine marathon would be held in two classes (Imoc60, VO65). It has now also been announced that more women than ever are to take part and that a new youth trophy is at stake for the youngsters. The following crew compositions, which can be flexibly formed, are being considered for the Imocas: Five actors, among whom there must be at least one woman. Or six actors, of which at least four must be women. The on-board reporter also comes along. So it is getting tight on the fast monohull foilers, which until now have mainly carried soloists or two-hand crews across the seas.
While the Imoca 60 teams are fighting for the classic Volvo Ocean Race title in the coming 14th edition (main competition), the younger teams in the VO65 racing goats are fighting for the first "Youth Challenge Trophy" in history of the most famous team race around the world. The majority of the ten sailors on any VO65 yacht must be under 30 years of age, with at least three of them under 26 years of age. In all crews there will be sailors at the start according to various permitted configuration options.
Her concept for youngsters should become the standard in the coming race: turn-the-tide-on-plastic skipper Dee Caffari
"These rules will ensure that the best athletes in sailing take part in our event," said Volvo Ocean Race President Richard Brisius. "At the same time, with the Youth Challenge Trophy, we're opening the door for sailors to take part in this sporting summit at an earlier point in their lives." A new sustainability and environmental protection program should involve all teams, host port cities and interest groups in the form of guidelines.
With the switch from the main field to the Imocas, the organizers want to strengthen the technology aspect. "Historically, breakthroughs in design and performance have always been an important component of the race's success since the premiere in 1973," says Co-President Johan Salén, "the Imoca 60 class yachts represent the most innovative technology in seaworthy monohulls Designers will chase every possible technical advantage they can find. " The on-board reporters will stay, who will again report live in words, pictures and videos from the boats from all over the world. The official registration period starts on December 11th.
Form the new main field in the Volvo Ocean Race 2021/22: foiling Imocas like Boris Herrmann's "Malizia" in this picture