After two years of preparation, the launch of a new boat and months of training on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, the PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG Propulsion team is ready to get the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012 underway this weekend. The first points will be awarded towards the overall standings in the race with the In-Port Race on Saturday, October 29, in the Race Start port of Alicante, Spain, with the Pro Am Race to follow on Sunday.
“If you look back at the last two Volvo Ocean Races, the winner of the overall race hasn't done well in the first In-Port,” said skipper Ken Read. “Of course, anytime this group of sailors gets on a starting line they’re going to compete as hard as humanly possible. It's important for our team not to read too much into winning or losing this first In-Port Race. It’s fun, but there’s a lot of racing to go.”
PUMA’s Mar Mostro and its 11-member crew will face five other boats when the starting gun fires for the Iberdrola In-Port Race at 12:00 UTC (14:00 local) on Saturday. The race course is set to challenge the teams at close maneuvers and tactics as they round the buoys. The course will be viewable from along Postiguet Beach and throughout a large area of Alicante, with the Castle of Santa Bárbara providing the backdrop. Three guests will be onboard to witness the action first hand.
In-Port racing will be streamed live online at www.volvooceanrace.com and on the live section of the Volvo Ocean Race YouTube channel: youtube.com/volvooceanracevideos. Streaming begins five minutes before the 10-minute warning signal. Also visit www.volvooceanrace.com for complete television broadcast information in local markets.
On Sunday, the Pro Am Race will begin at 10:00 UTC (12:00) local with the first of three races. Guests onboard each race will participate in sailing PUMA’s Mar Mostro around the race course.
In-Port and Pro Am races will be held at all 10 port stopovers. The first leg of this year’s Volvo Ocean Race gets underway on Saturday, November 5, and the fleet will travel 39,000 nautical miles, finishing in Galway, Ireland, in July 2012.
The PUMA Ocean Racing team is once again under the leadership of Read (Newport, Rhode Island, United States). Collectively, the crew has won the Around the World Race six times. The core includes: Tom Addis, Navigator (Sydney, Australia); Ryan Godfrey, Pitman (Adelaide, Australia); Kelvin Harrap, Helmsman, Inshore Tactician (Napier, New Zealand); Brad Jackson, Design Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Rome Kirby, Trimmer & Driver (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Michael “Michi” Müller, Bowman (Kiel, Germany); Tony Mutter, Aerodynamics Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Casey Smith, Systems Manager & Bowman (Brisbane, Australia); Jonathan “Jono” Swain, Helmsman & Trimmer (Durban, South Africa); Amory Ross, Media Crew Member (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Kimo Worthington, General Manager (Portsmouth, Rhode Island, United States); and Tim Hacket, Shore Team Manager (Sydney, Australia).