The entire Barcelona World Race fleet of nine IMOCA Open 60 class yachts is now dockside in the Port of Barcelona.
With the arrival of Hugo Boss
overnight Wednesday, the fleet is complete. And with Race Village officially opened by the Mayor of Barcelona on Thursday, the excitement on the Moll de la Fusta is growing daily.
The security and checks on the fleet are nearly complete, with only minor issues left to be resolved. The general consensus is that the nine boats here represent a very well prepared, high-standard fleet.
The delivery for Hugo Boss
was important for more than just turning up at the Race Village - the voyage also served as a qualifying run for the team, something they were obliged to complete before the start of the race on Sunday 11 November.
Skipper Alex THOMSON
(GBR) and co-skipper Andrew CAPE (AUS) sailed the boat in racing trim, down to the last detail of eating freeze-dried food, which will make up the bulk of their diet following the race start. And according to THOMSON, both sailors were very happy with what they saw of the boat and each other.
"The new Hugo Boss has performed very well on the delivery sail and we are pretty much ready to go,"
THOMSON said. "This has been the longest Capey and I have been on the boat together and we have got on brilliantly. We can't wait until Sunday [11 November] to get this race underway.
"It's been a bit weird to do the qualification on the way here, but the boat has been superb throughout and we're happy she's fast and comfortable. She's a really nice boat and we're enjoying getting to know it."
Barcelona World Race Village Opens
The Barcelona World Race Village, at the Moll de la Fusta in the 'Old Port' of the city, was officially opened by the Mayor of Barcelona, Jordi HEREU, on Thursday morning. The mayor toured the facilities accompanied by the General Director of the Race, Andor Serra and several members of the institutions supporting the event. El alcalde de Barcelona, junto al monolito de la Barcelona World Race
Under bright sunshine and clear skies the dignitaries unveiled the Barcelona World Race Monolith (a sculpture representing a large-scale version of the race trophy) that was specially created by Basque sculptor Martín AZÚA. The monument pays tribute to the sailors undertaking the huge challenge of a double-handed, offshore, non-stop round the world adventure.
"It is a huge satisfaction for us,"
said HEREU. "This is going to have a big impact on the people of the city, who will want to follow closely what is happening out on the water."
Covering an area of 8000 square metres, the race village offers visitors an opportunity to interact with teams and their boats and enjoy a full programme of entertainment, including a series of concerts scheduled on the evenings at the race village.
The Barcelona Boat Show opens its doors this weekend and will run through Sunday the 11 November, the start day of the Barcelona World Race. Combining one of the biggest shows in Europe with the excitement of the Barcelona World Race means the atmosphere in the Port will be buzzing in the week leading up to the start.
Estrella Damm Sails For Africa
Barcelona World Race team Estrella Damm
crew members Guillermo ALTADILL
(ESP) and Johnathon MCKEE (USA) presented the charity organisation Africa Viva with a cheque for 15 000 euros on Friday, which the team won at the UK Artemis regatta held in August this year.
Vicky FUMADÓ, representing the charity, warmly thanked the team for such a generous gesture and for supporting the need to promote equality in developing countries. Africa Viva is a charity organisation working towards the research and development of health resources in several African countries such as Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and Mozambique.
The skippers also presented the Marketing Director of Estrella Damm Jaume Alaemany with the glass trophy they had been awarded.
General Director of the Barcelona World Race, Andor SERRA thanked the team for their support and participation in this new offshore, non-stop round the world challenge, and for sailing for such a worthwhile initiative.
Barcelona World Race - www.barcelonaworldrace.org