The participation of two Spanish boats brings the number of confirmed entries in the race to five. The others are Mean Machine (the Netherlands), Ericsson (Sweden) and PUMA (USA).
Pedro CAMPOS (ESP), who headed up the movistar entry in the 2005-06 race, has been tasked with managing the Spanish campaign. Sponsors for the two boats will be announced over the coming weeks.
'We are delighted to be coming back and entering two Spanish boats in the Volvo Ocean Race. We are pleased to be supporting the city of Alicante and are working hard to put a strong campaign together on their behalf.
'In the last race, Sanxenxo and Vigo and the whole region of Galicia attracted huge crowds and a world wide television audience through their involvement in the race and we are pleased that Alicante now has the same opportunity of hosting one of the biggest sports events in the world.'
Commenting on the announcement, Glenn BOURKE, the CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race, said, 'It's great news that we will have a major Spanish presence in 2008-09 with Alicante as the start port and two boats flying the flag for Spain out on the race track. The Spanish have a proud historical link with the Whitbread/Volvo and I am delighted that the tradition is being maintained. I'm sure Pedro CAMPOS and his team will put together a very competitive campaign.
'We know from the findings of the independent research from the 2005-06 race that twinning boats with ports from the same country is a sound commercial model. It also brings some nationalistic fervour to the event.
'We now have five confirmed entries which is a healthy position for us to be in as a race organization at this stage of our preparations for 2008-09. Coupled with the recent confirmation of China, India and Boston as port stopovers, it further reinforces our decision to break the four-year cycle of the race and take it to new, exciting territories.'
The Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09 will be the tenth running of this famous ocean marathon. Starting from Alicante, it will for the first time, take in ports in the Middle East, Southeast Asia, China and India. Spanning some 39,000 nautical miles, 8,000 more than the previous edition in 2005-06, it will stop at around 11 ports and take more than nine months to complete.The Volvo Ocean Race is an ISAF Special Event. For more information on the Volvo Ocean Race, the Volvo Open 70 and the teams competing, visit the official Volvo Ocean Race website - www.volvooceanrace.org.
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