Bekking and Brunel back in Volvo Ocean Race
Dutch sailor Bouwe Bekking will return for a record-equalling seventh bid for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, the world’s leading crewed offshore race, as skipper of a new campaign launched by Brunel on Tuesday in Amsterdam.
For both sailor and sponsor, it is a case of “unfinished business”. Bekking, 50, has competed in the event twice as skipper without winning and Team Brunel will be having their third crack at ocean sailing’s most prestigious crown on the new one-design Volvo Ocean 65.
Team Brunel is the fourth campaign to announce its participation in the 12th edition of the Volvo Ocean Race. The race starts with the Alicante in-port race on October 4, 2014 before setting off for the near nine-month, 39,370-nautical mile marathon a week later.
For Bekking, this latest challenge from one of the world’s leading nautical nations is a chance to put the record straight having twice finished runner-up in an event that is part of Dutch sailing heritage having had three winners over the event’s 40 years.
He will match the achievement of Swede Roger Nilson as the only man to have competed seven times in the race, nearly 30 years after his first attempt in 1985-86.
“A Dutch-speaking team in the Volvo Ocean Race again – we owe this to our heritage and the future sailing generations to come. But above all it’s the best sailing in the world,” said a delighted Bekking who takes the helm on a Dutch boat with a real chance of adding to the country’s success story.
“Our nation is known around the world as the country of windmills, dykes, tulips, cheese, wooden clogs – and the Volvo Ocean Race. The race is just in our blood.”
Brunel is a global project management, recruitment and consultancy company. Brunel CEO Jan Arie van Barneveld stated: “We are really happy that Brunel has again its own team and own sailing machine in the most exciting and prestigious sailing regatta in the world.”
“The formula of the race has been improved significantly: the boats are identical so it’s the teams that make the difference. It is about the quality and cooperation between the people.”
Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad added: “This announcement is great news all round. Brunel is a sponsor coming back to the race for the third time and feels like part of the Volvo Ocean Race family.
Team Brunel joins all-female campaign Team SCA, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing and the Chinese challenge Team Dongfeng in the 2014-15 line-up announced so far.
Read more about the Volvo Ocean Race