'I'm really happy with our crew. In the first meeting, everyone got together really well, which is a very important aspect for a round the world race. We have a mix of youth, potential and experience', Grael said.
The most experienced sailor in the crew is Spaniard Guillermo ALTADILL. He has more than 330,000 nautical miles in competitive sailing, six round the world races and has crossed the Atlantic 18 times. He was second in the last Volvo Ocean Race onboard Assa Abloy. 'I only accepted to be a part of Brasil 1 because I think we can win the race. I have huge experience in this race, but I have never won it. This time I want to win. Besides, I consider Torben GRAEL the most complete sailor in world,' Altadill explained.
Adrienne CAHALAN, the only woman in the crew, will be Brasil 1's navigator. She has been nominated for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year four times and was the first woman to have broken the record for the fastest time around the world in any type of boat. She was the navigator onboard Cheyenne, the 125ft maxi catamaran that broke the Round the World Speed Record on 5 April 2004 in 58 days, 9 hours, 32 minutes and 45 seconds.
Training starts in June and Torben GRAEL plans to include Ilhabela Sailing Week, one of the most prestigious in Brazil, in the training schedule.
Brasil 1, the first Brazilian built boat in Volvo Ocean Race, is designed by Farr Yacht Design and is being built in Indaiatuba, São Paulo. Knut FROSTAD, skipper of Djuice Dragons in the last Volvo Race, was the responsible for choosing the designers. Frostad is an advisor and sailor for the Brazilian project.
'I pushed for Farr Yacht Design because we did not have much time to develop the boat. In the last race, Djuice was the only non-Farr boat in the race. Although in some situations we were fast, in others we were really slow. Farr has a conservative approach and is always a safe approach', Frostad explained.
Boat construction started in October, with 20 workers. Now, Marco LANDI, the boat builder, has added 10 more to the construction team, among them two New Zealanders. The deck and the hull are in the final stage of lamination.