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Volvo Ocean Race 2014 - The New Boat


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#1 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:25 AM

The usually quite leaky VOR ship has been extremely tight-lipped about the next design, and now that I'm on the ground in Miami, I finally had the ability to do the digging I needed to in order to get the details nailed down.

I spent the entire day talking to VOR insiders, digging for the story that we first reported as rumor more than three months ago, and that is now almost reality. I'm going to pass out now for an hour or so, but stand by for some great shit.

#2 thetruth

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:38 AM

Well lets hope it is not another bandwagon multi

#3 mr_ryano

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 12:24 PM

Well lets hope it is not another bandwagon multi


Much worse, from what I've heard......

New boat would mean everyone starts from scratch. No small budget teams getting second hand boats, and R&D costs will be sky high if there is not a one design package included

#4 mad

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 12:54 PM


Well lets hope it is not another bandwagon multi


Much worse, from what I've heard......

New boat would mean everyone starts from scratch. No small budget teams getting second hand boats, and R&D costs will be sky high if there is not a one design package included

Are there any small budget teams?

#5 gybe-ho!

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 02:15 PM

Here comes the Volvo Open 60...fully crewed with 6 (or 7 if you're a girls team)!

#6 Swanno (Ohf Shore)

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 02:38 PM



Well lets hope it is not another bandwagon multi


Much worse, from what I've heard......

New boat would mean everyone starts from scratch. No small budget teams getting second hand boats, and R&D costs will be sky high if there is not a one design package included

Are there any small budget teams?


Sanya started off with that in mind I would assume

#7 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 03:27 PM

Report is on the front page - written from aboard the Umpire Boat during the VOR Pro-Am race. That's a new one for me!

#8 Touch of Gray

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 03:45 PM

Interesting scoop. More interesting that Farr may be the designer for a one design given the general unmitigated failure of the Farr boats now and in the past. Money speaks?

#9 Mud sailor

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 04:08 PM

agreed, I'd be very unhappy if I was Juan K

#10 Liquid

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 04:27 PM

Farr... really?

I like the IMOCA 60 route myself... why not a OD 60 that will have a second life in the many, already established IMOCA races. Why would Volvo need IMOCA to sanction it? Just build to the rule.

OD won't kill the race. How big was the spread from 1st to 2nd in the last several legs - after many thousands of miles? Minutes.... Seems rather one designish already, except of course for that farrdog!

#11 A Florida Redneck

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 04:30 PM

I would like to vote for a one-design Telefonica with beefed up scantlings.
But then the sailors would just push the boat harder and probably break it anyway..
Suppose a smaller, less pricey boat may make some sense.
As long as Juan K designs it and not Farr....

#12 gybe-ho!

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 04:43 PM

Farr real....fark!

It will be a canting-keel boat with more generous scantlings than the existing boats, and Farr will be the designer. The boat will be constructed by a syndicate of builders, with much of the work done at Multiplast, with ultra-strict prohibitions against modifications. Halyards, sheets, blocks, even electronics will be one-design, and perhaps most importantly, so will sails. Two boat programs will probably be allowed.

I know as Clean's report stated that this is NOT a done deal as yet, sounds like the death knell for the Volvo as we know it...

#13 ~HHN92~

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 05:17 PM

Maybe have a Farr option and a JuanK option.

Everything could be fixed the same: decks, layout, rigs, electronics, hardware, etc, but that little tweak between the designers on the hull shape and foils. I would not think the cost would be that great, just two hull molds instead of one.

#14 illusion wanderer

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 06:06 PM

First, you must grasp the concept of the VOR being nothing more than a business - it's not a design competition or man and machine V mother nature. The success or failure of a VOR campaign is based solely on what return they get for their investment. If the VOR can bring in cost saving measures i.e. OD fleet, whilst keeping the media and fan interaction integrity at least intact, if not improve, the advantages from a sponsors perspective are two fold - lower barrier to entry and increased rate of return.

#15 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 06:36 PM

I think the real reason for the preferred VOR option boils down to 2 things:

1) One design will let them build in a better safety margin
2) Potential new sponsors will not be so afraid of the ADOR problem: Spending a metric shit ton of cash to find out you are a dog is not attractive to them, especially these days.

#16 Mud sailor

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 06:51 PM

why not a modified box rule
one design rig (mast and sails), and keel and electronics

and then packaged into a custom hull/deck design at 65' long (with very tight structure scantlings)

this way the boats can be different but within a much tighter envelope and limits on cost.

#17 GBH

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 07:20 PM

why not a modified box rule
one design rig (mast and sails), and keel and electronics

and then packaged into a custom hull/deck design at 65' long (with very tight structure scantlings)

this way the boats can be different but within a much tighter envelope and limits on cost.



Gawd, the sky fairies are out there again! One design?? There's never any such thing, and certainly not in sails and rigs - there will always be quick and not so quick ones. Ditto with practically everything else as you have to have some tolerances, and then people will spend the time and money to optimise to those tolerances.

Really is time to pull the plug - the whole thing is well past its sell by date. Yet another (yawn) commercial jamboree going to places no-one has ever heard of on shorter legs that the crew still winge are too long. Poor darlings. Thank heavens for the 60's as at least they still do a proper hard-ass canter around the planet and make the thing a real man against the elements challenge.

#18 Beachcomber

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 08:12 PM

Well, here's the upshot for everyone who's posted moronic comments about the quality of Farr designs.

If Farr is the only designer, when some of the boats break and others don't, you'll realize that there is more to the toughness of the boat than the designer, for instance, the builder to name but one factor

If Farr is the only designer and one or two teams languish at the back of the fleet you'll realize that there is a lot more to the performance of the boat on the course than just its design. Here are some factors for you guys to consider:

1 route selection
2 sail selection
3 team talent and preparation
4 team fitness
5 team morale
6 the hull builder
7 the spare builder
8 the sail maker
9 workmanship of the shore team
... and so on.

And to the Farr haters with their head up their arses, I'll remind you of this:

Tele Blue was a hell of a good boat. (The hull of Tele Black, identical design, came in nearly a tonne heavier). If they hadn't run aground twice, they almost certainly would have finished second. And if back then Telephonica had had their act together as Ericsson did, they would have done proper 2 boat testing, trained in the Atlantic instead of the Med, fitted big enough rudders, and been ready to rock and roll from leg 1.

#19 Anthonyvop

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 08:17 PM

Really is time to pull the plug - the whole thing is well past its sell by date. Yet another (yawn) commercial jamboree going to places no-one has ever heard of on shorter legs that the crew still winge are too long. Poor darlings. Thank heavens for the 60's as at least they still do a proper hard-ass canter around the planet and make the thing a real man against the elements challenge.


Yep..Your right......:rolleyes:

VOLVO OCEAN RACE DELIVERS CROSS-PLATFORM AUDIENCE GROWTH
The Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 has delivered big increases in audience across television, online, radio and print, figures from external research released in the Mid Race Report show.

Headlines include:

– Cumulative TV coverage up by 90 percent from the 2008-09 race (1)

– A 45 percent increase in cumulative readership in print articles (2)

Number of online articles already greater than for entire 2008-09 race (3)

35 million visits, 110 million page views to the Race and Game websites (4)

111,000 Facebook fans as of March 18 (5)

Cumulative radio audience of almost 800 million from top eight countries (6)

The cumulative TV audience as of February 19 was 880 million based on 1,200 hours of coverage, in both dedicated programming and news items largely based on the compelling content being sent via the Media Crew Member programme. Those figures compare with a cumulative audience of 459 million at the corresponding stage of the last race, representing a 90 percent increase.

The biggest total audience came from China. During Leg 3 alone, there were 81 TV broadcasts in China, watched by an average of 2.5 million. The most watched was on CCTV1 and was seen by an estimated 12.5 million. Spain, which has been a particular cross-platform success story in this race, had the highest number of broadcasts, followed by the United States and China.

In the top eight measured countries, the cumulative radio audience was of almost 800 million to March 10. France was at the top of the list, delivering an audience of over 285 million, followed by China, Spain and the UAE, with New Zealand, South Africa, Ireland and the United Kingdom rounding out the top eight.

There were more than 35 million visits, providing 110 million page views, to the Volvo Ocean Race official website and the Volvo Ocean Race Game website. In terms of cumulative page views at the official race website, by the start of Leg 5 the number was 16 percent higher than the total for the entire last Race.

The number of articles published across the internet was also above the total for the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09, with 30,651 registered from October 10, 2011 to March 18, 2012 compared to 30,468 for the whole of the last race.

The number of print articles monitored in publications in 15 markets was also up to 4,249, while showing a 45 percent increase in cumulative print readership reach over the pre-Race period and Legs 1-3 compared to 2008-09.

"A major part of our strategy has been to increase the level of news coverage of the 2011-12 race across the media," said Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad.

"I have been especially pleased with the breadth and scale of online news coverage about the race and it is great to see that we have already passed the total number of online news articles published during our last edition."

The Race has also reported big growth on Facebook, with the 111,299 likes recorded as of March 18 this year making the Volvo Ocean Race comfortably the biggest sailing event on the platform.

Another focus for Race organisers has been to raise the quality and level of entertainment at the stopovers along the route.

The popularity of the Race Villages saw 1.3 million visits to the first four host ports -- Alicante, Cape Town, Abu Dhabi and Sanya in China.

"Together with our great host city partners we have been pleased to see visitors spending more time in the Race Villages and coming back for more," said Frostad. "There's still a long way to go to the finish and we are determined to continue to improve our numbers and to reach an all-time high on all platforms."

The report's release comes as the teams prepare for the PORTMIAMI In-Port Race in Miami on Saturday, May 19 and the start of Leg 7 to Lisbon the following day. The Race will finish in Galway on July 7.



#20 reggie

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 06:41 AM

Well, here's the upshot for everyone who's posted moronic comments about the quality of Farr designs.

If Farr is the only designer, when some of the boats break and others don't, you'll realize that there is more to the toughness of the boat than the designer, for instance, the builder to name but one factor

If Farr is the only designer and one or two teams languish at the back of the fleet you'll realize that there is a lot more to the performance of the boat on the course than just its design. Here are some factors for you guys to consider:

1 route selection
2 sail selection
3 team talent and preparation
4 team fitness
5 team morale
6 the hull builder
7 the spare builder
8 the sail maker
9 workmanship of the shore team
... and so on.

And to the Farr haters with their head up their arses, I'll remind you of this:

Tele Blue was a hell of a good boat. (The hull of Tele Black, identical design, came in nearly a tonne heavier). If they hadn't run aground twice, they almost certainly would have finished second. And if back then Telephonica had had their act together as Ericsson did, they would have done proper 2 boat testing, trained in the Atlantic instead of the Med, fitted big enough rudders, and been ready to rock and roll from leg 1.


Well said - there are some ignoramuses here. Mr Walker is having a harder time blaming the boat this time around, but what is the common denominator in his dismal performance??? And take a look at Juan K designs track records for reliability? Both ABN boats having major failures multiple times during the race - namely massive delamination in bow sections (almost forcing race withdrawal into Melbourne) and major keel canting systems failures, major delam in E3, and same in E4 (maybe they didn't talk about it but when you can hear grinders going day and night and rolls of carbon being carried up and into the boat you know what is going on). And Tele this time near sinking going to the horn - their stop was imperative, not strategic - PR bullshit. And then Rambler/Speedboat? Juan K designs track record for failures is just as spectacular as any other, he just has very slippery shoulders and benefits from good PR machines in the teams. And he has designed his fair share of shitters in the past. If ERIC had the TELE boats last race, ERIC would still have won.

The VOR is in the shit. Knut didn't listen to team input after the last edition and look what has happened. 6 boats, and much more expensive. This race is a joke. They dont have the balls to make a bold call. The route - if they want to generate interest in oddball territories around the world then buy a circus tent and ship that around with a couple of old clunkers with volvo stickers on the side - oh, hang on thats pretty much what happened in legs 2 and 3....save yourself the cost of actually having to build a boat!

Juans K's assertion that he would rather have 6 quality boats then more of lower quality is utter bullshit. Knut was insistent that he needed 12 boats for this event. FAIL.

Go IMOCA, max crew of 6, put a cost cap on it - including salary cap - and go for a 4 or 5 leg event. If the sailors don't like it then fuck off and go do something else, plenty of people will step in your shoes. The race is not being followed because of celebrity competitors - they are secondary, if that. IMOCA: 1 - robust existing class, 2 - instant fleet of good 2nd hand boats, 3 - public couldn't give a shit/sailing fans will like it, 4 - budgets >50% of existing, 5- a proper pre/post VOR circuit....the list goes on.

#21 DickDastardly

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 07:45 AM

I think what all this talk proves is that the design of actual boat doesn't matter too much when Volvo's objective is to engage the non-sailing fraternity as spectators. What matters is spectacular media coming off the boats, close competition and human stories, especially around "man vs. the elements". Think about it, all this would be possible of they were racing the same boats as the Clipper fleet. And if the boats were slower there would be more advertising and media opportunities on each and every leg.

The fact that the V070 boats are at the cutting edge of yacht technology is lost on most of the target audience. It's irrelevant to them. Remember AC33? Those monsters didn't look any more spectacular on a TV screen than the boats in AC32. Sure if you're a gear head sailor you get it, but that's not the point,

And, the fact that most of target audience don't get that is completely lost on the sailing fraternity who dump on anything they deem not edgy enough.

  • Cutting edge boats? Dumb idea
  • One design? Probably a good idea - you can tell a media story around design, sorta, but these days the differences are minor.
  • Canting keels? Unnecessary

Flame on

#22 sheeting yarns

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 08:25 AM

If you want a spectacle, it doesn't matter what class or size of boat as long as the conditions are hard and the competition is fierce.
If you want to show excitement and extreme sailing, you are not going to get it sailing near the equator like the current race.
If you want to save money and attract more teams, steer clear of high-exposure racing and reduce the stoppovers and crew.

What does Volvo want from their race?

#23 bbr

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 10:14 AM

The solution to the Volvo's broken-boat woes is so simple and so obvious:

Get rid of the points system!

Go back to it being an elapsed-time race... If you don't finish a leg you can't win overall... Period...

It worked perfectly before they changed to the points system...

Bill

#24 GBH

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 11:27 AM

The solution to the Volvo's broken-boat woes is so simple and so obvious:

Get rid of the points system!

Go back to it being an elapsed-time race... If you don't finish a leg you can't win overall... Period...

It worked perfectly before they changed to the points system...

Bill


+1 Mr.Basic! Go back to the real route as well:) Finish under your own steam only - hitchhiking on ships around the planet - who would ever have believed that one.

#25 J24_guy

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 12:34 PM

I think the real reason for the preferred VOR option boils down to 2 things:

1) One design will let them build in a better safety margin
2) Potential new sponsors will not be so afraid of the ADOR problem: Spending a metric shit ton of cash to find out you are a dog is not attractive to them, especially these days.




Both of these seem like very valid reasons! I think having the boats strictly OD would really help attract new sponsors for just the reason you articulate. Is there any downside to OD?

#26 Wess

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 01:26 PM


The solution to the Volvo's broken-boat woes is so simple and so obvious:

Get rid of the points system!

Go back to it being an elapsed-time race... If you don't finish a leg you can't win overall... Period...

It worked perfectly before they changed to the points system...

Bill


+1 Mr.Basic! Go back to the real route as well:) Finish under your own steam only - hitchhiking on ships around the planet - who would ever have believed that one.


What he said.

#27 Icedtea

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 05:42 PM

The solution to the Volvo's broken-boat woes is so simple and so obvious:

Get rid of the points system!

Go back to it being an elapsed-time race...
If you don't finish a leg you can't win overall... Period...

It worked perfectly before they changed to the points system...

Bill

+1
Excellent idea, wonder how much/if at all slower the boats would be if they were built to last?


My bet is not by much!

#28 mad

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 09:50 PM




Well lets hope it is not another bandwagon multi


Much worse, from what I've heard......

New boat would mean everyone starts from scratch. No small budget teams getting second hand boats, and R&D costs will be sky high if there is not a one design package included

Are there any small budget teams?


Sanya started off with that in mind I would assume

Late on parade? Yes. Short on budget? Not really, as proved by the shipping the shipping bill to date.

#29 SR CHIEF (RET)

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 12:04 AM

Clean! awesome job bro! Stay on these guys.

#30 spacecowboy

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 02:19 AM

What is happening to the VOR race regarding the boat design is not in the best interests of the race, sailors, engineers, shore crew, sponsors or any current stake holders at all.

The fact is, a small CARTEL of boat building firms together with FYD are on the verge of hijacking this great race and their reasons are purely selfish and financial. They have been pushing a One Design option since Alicante and are very very close to getting their way. The failures and poor fleet numbers have only fueled their selling pitch, but this is by far the closest race ever in the history of the event, but that seems to matter little.

They are pushing a cheap, under powered, unexciting, dog that no one will want to sail. They are promising the world and pushing the cost angle for getting new teams involved. It's a complete joke. If cost was the main driver for the decision, it would not be built in Europe which is the plan.

Current teams are being told how it will be, not asked what they think is best. The (current) teams have not been consulted and their opinions are ignored. The organizers seem to be catering to the 'potential' teams, not the teams who have invested millions in the current race, built strong teams and are ready to push the go button for the next race.

How many of the potential 12-14 teams that were involved in planning/design meeting in Brazil 2009 actually turned up to race? Next to none.

If this race goes one design, development in offshore sailing will basically cease. How Volvo and Knut can let boat building firms decide the future of this race is beyond most people comprehension inside the VOR community. but it's going to happen. About the only thing that could stop it i think is if current teams just simply boycott the next inshore race or something until they have a say in the future of the race they have bought in to.

It could seriously back fire on VOR too. At present they still have absolutely no idea how to make it work. Who gets the first boat? Gear failure = Redress? Warranty on the boat they designed and built? Are they really one design (is every Laser or 49er sail identical? NO.)? Too many other issues to mention. Probably too many to make it work, but the boat building CARTEL are promising all will be fine.

And they are allowing 2 boat teams again???? That's cutting costs???? OD or No OD, anyone who has been involved with the AC knows how expensive two boat testing is. Teams will spend days, weeks, months on the water two boat testing to gain any advantage they can from this 3knot s..t box VOR are about to impose on the sailing world.

Someone, somehow, somewhere has to stop this from getting through. Sure, change the design and make some cost cutting measures, but don't destroy a great race which is pushing and setting the limits for monohull sailing.

There has to be a better solution.

#31 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 02:52 AM

Here's the result of my conversations with the head honchos so far on whether they want one-design:

Walker: Yes
Sanderson: Yes
Read: No
Dalton: Yes (with qualifications)

Interviews with Walker and Read and Moose are loading. Very good stuff.

Talking to Knut tomorrow, and Pat, Pres of FYD tomorrow.

Ask your questions.

#32 SR CHIEF (RET)

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 02:55 AM

What is happening to the VOR race regarding the boat design is not in the best interests of the race, sailors, engineers, shore crew, sponsors or any current stake holders at all.

The fact is, a small CARTEL of boat building firms together with FYD are on the verge of hijacking this great race and their reasons are purely selfish and financial. They have been pushing a One Design option since Alicante and are very very close to getting their way. The failures and poor fleet numbers have only fueled their selling pitch, but this is by far the closest race ever in the history of the event, but that seems to matter little.

They are pushing a cheap, under powered, unexciting, dog that no one will want to sail. They are promising the world and pushing the cost angle for getting new teams involved. It's a complete joke. If cost was the main driver for the decision, it would not be built in Europe which is the plan.

Current teams are being told how it will be, not asked what they think is best. The (current) teams have not been consulted and their opinions are ignored. The organizers seem to be catering to the 'potential' teams, not the teams who have invested millions in the current race, built strong teams and are ready to push the go button for the next race.

How many of the potential 12-14 teams that were involved in planning/design meeting in Brazil 2009 actually turned up to race? Next to none.

If this race goes one design, development in offshore sailing will basically cease. How Volvo and Knut can let boat building firms decide the future of this race is beyond most people comprehension inside the VOR community. but it's going to happen. About the only thing that could stop it i think is if current teams just simply boycott the next inshore race or something until they have a say in the future of the race they have bought in to.

It could seriously back fire on VOR too. At present they still have absolutely no idea how to make it work. Who gets the first boat? Gear failure = Redress? Warranty on the boat they designed and built? Are they really one design (is every Laser or 49er sail identical? NO.)? Too many other issues to mention. Probably too many to make it work, but the boat building CARTEL are promising all will be fine.

And they are allowing 2 boat teams again???? That's cutting costs???? OD or No OD, anyone who has been involved with the AC knows how expensive two boat testing is. Teams will spend days, weeks, months on the water two boat testing to gain any advantage they can from this 3knot s..t box VOR are about to impose on the sailing world.

Someone, somehow, somewhere has to stop this from getting through. Sure, change the design and make some cost cutting measures, but don't destroy a great race which is pushing and setting the limits for monohull sailing.

There has to be a better solution.

my .02... the current VOR is clearly unsustainable... The fucking budgets for each program is what 20 million?! The boats can't finish legs, thus the INSANE logistics cost... I have great friends who sailed and were shore support over the years and each conveyed that the next would be the last... If Volvo wants to make this a race, the team budgets also need a box rule, the chicks, wives, kids , tutors, nanny's , ect... is an expense that the teams would gladly like to shed. I see it differently perhaps... I deployed alot in defense of the USA, NATO, and other countries so through my very simple mind I see this race in its current form again as not sustainable... The VOR is an absolute blast to follow, yet these guys hit the dock and fly home (sometimes half way around the world) for 96 hours for rest??? Gimme a fuck'in break... Finish each leg, fix the boat, rest get recharged, and go race! i think the current format is too "guci' as opposed to what it should be. team budgets should have a set number, leave the chicks and kids at home, need more like 15 teams , more live streaming, you got a race... The clipper cup is a model , especially the new boat that the VOR BOD should look to.

#33 Moonduster

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 03:16 AM

Yo Junior Twit,

Those "chicks and kids" happen to be the wives/partners and children of professional athletes involved in a year-long campaign. While you might think it's plausible to save a little money by simply telling these people that they ought to forego seeing the families for an entire year, I actually have a hard time believing that will cut the mustard.

You might wanna check with those "great friends" of yours and see what they think of your ridiculously inane plan for their careers.

#34 crashdog

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 04:05 AM

Here's the result of my conversations with the head honchos so far on whether they want one-design:

Walker: Yes
Sanderson: Yes
Read: No
Dalton: Yes (with qualifications)

Interviews with Walker and Read and Moose are loading. Very good stuff.

Talking to Knut tomorrow, and Pat, Pres of FYD tomorrow.

Ask your questions.


So the losers want one-design and the winners not so much. Interesting.

My prediction is that if Volvo goes 1-D, then it won't be long before a bunch of disgruntled corinthians initiate a new challenge round the world race. Maybe even sponsored by a drinks company. The problem with volvo is that safety thing...

#35 SR CHIEF (RET)

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 04:06 AM

[quote name='Moonduster' timestamp='1337483795' post='3720246']
Yo Junior Twit,

Those "chicks and kids" happen to be the wives/partners and children of professional athletes involved in a year-long campaign. While you might think it's plausible to save a little money by simply telling these people that they ought to forego seeing the families for an entire year, I actually have a hard time believing that will cut the mustard.

You might wanna check with those "great friends" of yours and see what they think of your ridiculously inane plan for their careers.
[/q


hahahaha, "junior twit"... like I was say'in... friends of mine who have worked/participated in VOR camps., previous and current, have ALL conveyed the same... UNSUSTAINABLE, so why do you think junior twit a paradign shift is in the works for the 2014 VOR? Your sarcasm and ignorance... must be from the south of france... lemeguess...Tulon...

#36 Lostmydetailsagain

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 07:41 AM

The problem with going OD would be, as mentioned:

* that the boats are first and foremost not equal
* OD does not make racing cheaper (instead of big design fee you still have to pay a smaller design fee but also pay for more expensive tooling, additional measurements etcetera)
* Who is responsible (and who will want to take on responsibility): torn sail -> redress please ("normal use", "we would have never build it like that", etcetera), Chipped paint: redress please...
* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss. From having dealt with the guys who decide to pump 5-20m euros in an offshore racing project: not being OD is a security rather than a liability as it means the blame can be shifted. For OD class, you choose only the people and the rest is equal and loosing than means you have made a wrong investment decision. With the different designs you can at least point at the team going for a set of parameters (designer, builder etcetera) outside of the control and with a high chance of the boat at least solid in one area. In this race all new boats have won something so emphasis can be on quality in a certain area from PR/marketing POV.

As always, millions want to do the race (be it Volvo, IMOCA, AC or even an olympic campaign) but only a few get everything in place. When a number of people consistently manage to get organised I would like to think you'd want to listen to them. 33 cities have asked to be considered for a volvo stopover (at raison the 5m euro more or less) and are in a final round but although this creates income for the race, using more stopovers (and going away from the more traditional route and planning) will increase expense.

Speaking from the heart I think both Volvo and IMOCA need to stay fairly open rule classes/races to aid the development of sailing in general and I can live with reduced participation numbers.

Thinking with my head, I think the downsides of going OD and the implications on the organisers are detrimental perhaps not in the short term but definitely in the middle to long term. Imagine a boat not performing as advertised with a big firm backing a team, a measurement check shows the boat is not up to the rule standards and 10m euros has been pumped into the project I can see this going to court so the sponsor gets his money back. I remember from 2005-06 that ABN AMRO had a penalty clause in the contract with Volvo for a minimum required number of boats on the start line. If it had not been for the Ozzies (and the Dutchies paying a number of the bills throughout the race) the white boat had effectively raced around the world for free to the sponsor. In the case of OD I would advise the backers to ensure a clearly defined penalty clause is included in the agreement with both team and Volvo to ensure I get a fast OD and not a slow one. And then Volvo will pass on the risk to the designer/builder/management group and all of a sudden there have been 5 boats build, a company has gone bust and apart from a few individuals everybody looses. I've seen it in motor racing before where a 1m plus racecar had to be scrapped because the sum of all parts being just a little off the mark meant the package was not as advertised and therefore had to be replaced before it had driven a single yard... Yes the current format is unsustainable but I don't think the boat is the problem: the budget is more dependant on logistics and wages than on boat and sails or at least that was the case in 05-06 and 08-09.



#37 Swanno (Ohf Shore)

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:26 AM


Here's the result of my conversations with the head honchos so far on whether they want one-design:

Walker: Yes
Sanderson: Yes
Read: No
Dalton: Yes (with qualifications)

Interviews with Walker and Read and Moose are loading. Very good stuff.

Talking to Knut tomorrow, and Pat, Pres of FYD tomorrow.

Ask your questions.


So the losers want one-design and the winners not so much. Interesting.

My prediction is that if Volvo goes 1-D, then it won't be long before a bunch of disgruntled corinthians initiate a new challenge round the world race. Maybe even sponsored by a drinks company. The problem with volvo is that safety thing...


I agree and I for one don't want to see the VOR go OD. It is as much of a design competition as much as a yacht race. Remember what Farr first brought to the table in the first VO70 race compared to JK? I agree with smaller boats but let it be a design show to allow progression in offshore racing yacht development. Remember the Code Zero was a VOR idea back in 1997

#38 Moonduster

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:32 AM

The solution to unequal boats is simply to rotate the teams across the boats at each stop, probably taking their sails with them.

Regardless, if the design isn't capable of breaking the 600nm barrier, then the entire concept of the VOR is, in my opinion, dead.

There are quite a few things that could be done to reduce costs - eliminating each team's dual shore-side setups that leap-frog around the world is one. Longer stops, no massive shore-side crew, a One Design with a single Volvo-supplied shore crew responsible for repairs and maintenance would do more, I believe, to reduce overall operating expense than anything.

That said, I hate the idea of a One Design VOR.




#39 onimod

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 09:01 AM

Does anyone have a basic budget for a campaign?
Just simple stuff - basic boat, rigging and then the voyage costs wages, maintenance etc.
Is the boat the major outlay or is it actually people?

The first thing I think about is that any change effectively writes off 4 very competitive (and one that might be) boats and everyone to start from scratch next time.
That doesn't sound cheap.

#40 Icedtea

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 09:30 AM

The solution to unequal boats is simply to rotate the teams across the boats at each stop, probably taking their sails with them.

Regardless, if the design isn't capable of breaking the 600nm barrier, then the entire concept of the VOR is, in my opinion, dead.

There are quite a few things that could be done to reduce costs - eliminating each team's dual shore-side setups that leap-frog around the world is one. Longer stops, no massive shore-side crew, a One Design with a single Volvo-supplied shore crew responsible for repairs and maintenance would do more, I believe, to reduce overall operating expense than anything.

That said, I hate the idea of a One Design VOR.



Rotating teams across boats would be a total disaster, eventually a team would click that they don't have to sail that boat again and just knobble it on the other teams....

#41 Carboninit

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 09:58 AM

What is the biggest sailing fleet in the world? Take that and use that formula if you want it to work . To have one designer is ridiculous.Have a team of designers that can come up with something. If boats do not finish a leg they are out .Its called sailing round the world not bloody piggy back.It seems to me they are trying to run before they walk.1st it was kanting keels , sorted , now its build ,they need to get that right then move on.One design round the planet thats fast and works and brings more teams to the startline. Yes Please. Oh and as for Abu ,get your night watch drivers and trimmers sorted ,ya going backwards at night.

#42 Swanno (Ohf Shore)

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 10:49 AM

What is the biggest sailing fleet in the world?


Oppies? Lasers?

Don't think you could get enough food in either for a southern ocean leg for starters. :lol: :lol: :lol:

#43 Carboninit

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 11:32 AM

Oppie it is then.I like it. For choosing a designer apoint the designer with the most offshore leg wins from the previous Volvo.That way the other designers have to get there fingers out.

#44 Icedtea

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 11:38 AM

I just did ten miles in a Radial in a force four. If your suggesting people take them around the world.....


I want some of what you're smoking....

#45 Carboninit

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 02:04 PM

So a 60 it is then, designed by the French and built by the French. Job done .Volvo Imoca 60 OD.

#46 Heriberto

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 06:50 PM

What is happening to the VOR race regarding the boat design is not in the best interests of the race, sailors, engineers, shore crew, sponsors or any current stake holders at all.

The fact is, a small CARTEL of boat building firms together with FYD are on the verge of hijacking this great race and their reasons are purely selfish and financial. They have been pushing a One Design option since Alicante and are very very close to getting their way. The failures and poor fleet numbers have only fueled their selling pitch, but this is by far the closest race ever in the history of the event, but that seems to matter little.

They are pushing a cheap, under powered, unexciting, dog that no one will want to sail. They are promising the world and pushing the cost angle for getting new teams involved. It's a complete joke. If cost was the main driver for the decision, it would not be built in Europe which is the plan.

Current teams are being told how it will be, not asked what they think is best. The (current) teams have not been consulted and their opinions are ignored. The organizers seem to be catering to the 'potential' teams, not the teams who have invested millions in the current race, built strong teams and are ready to push the go button for the next race.

How many of the potential 12-14 teams that were involved in planning/design meeting in Brazil 2009 actually turned up to race? Next to none.

If this race goes one design, development in offshore sailing will basically cease. How Volvo and Knut can let boat building firms decide the future of this race is beyond most people comprehension inside the VOR community. but it's going to happen. About the only thing that could stop it i think is if current teams just simply boycott the next inshore race or something until they have a say in the future of the race they have bought in to.

It could seriously back fire on VOR too. At present they still have absolutely no idea how to make it work. Who gets the first boat? Gear failure = Redress? Warranty on the boat they designed and built? Are they really one design (is every Laser or 49er sail identical? NO.)? Too many other issues to mention. Probably too many to make it work, but the boat building CARTEL are promising all will be fine.

And they are allowing 2 boat teams again???? That's cutting costs???? OD or No OD, anyone who has been involved with the AC knows how expensive two boat testing is. Teams will spend days, weeks, months on the water two boat testing to gain any advantage they can from this 3knot s..t box VOR are about to impose on the sailing world.

Someone, somehow, somewhere has to stop this from getting through. Sure, change the design and make some cost cutting measures, but don't destroy a great race which is pushing and setting the limits for monohull sailing.

There has to be a better solution.


+1000

This is the closest around the world racing that I can remember, and the excellent MCM concept has ensured great coverage, leading to a huge increase in interest (as shown above). If Telefonica had been penalized (as they should have been) for carrying an extra sail on the first legs, the outcome would be even closer. It's easy to look like unbeatable heroes, as they did, when you have an advantage outside the rules, as has been acknowledged.

So what if the boats have occasionally broken? If you stick to the same design envelope, safety improvements can be made on a known commodity. Anyway, sailors who are in a heated competition, that have an option to get back in the race if the boat breaks, will race the boat to the edge of the boat breaking. It will ALWAYS BE THAT WAY NO MATTER WHAT BOAT. Then there is the length of the race requiring fast boats. The more stops you have (increased value to sponsors) requires fast boats to get around the marble in the available weather window. You have to have a boat that requires "throttling back in sporty conditions", or you need to reduce the stops to get around. Try selling that to additional sponsors. If anything, to maximise exposure and sponsor value, the next boat needs to be faster than the existing ones, not slower. Hell, you could have two or three in-port races rather than one then and get even more exposure opportunities.

It really does seem like there is some boat industry shenanigans going on here, where sponsors needs are secondary to those of the marine industry. Major conflict of interest. I have been trying to convince a good friend, highly-placed in a major US retailing chain that is trying to expand into emerging markets like China and India, that the VOR is a great deal. The current one certainly is. I would be very careful advising him to get involved in a marine-industry scam.

For that matter, if they really wanted to increase sponsor value, they would be working to get an Indian team and a stop in Mumbai, the second largest population in the world. Certainly would have more value to a wider range of sponsors, and less logistical problems than Abu Dhabi....

#47 Beachcomber

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 03:35 AM

The solution to the Volvo's broken-boat woes is so simple and so obvious:

Get rid of the points system!

Go back to it being an elapsed-time race... If you don't finish a leg you can't win overall... Period...

It worked perfectly before they changed to the points system...

Bill


That's right. In the old days, with the elapsed time system, I don't remember ever reading emails or seeing uploaded videos of the boats breaking down on the water. So it must not have happened.

#48 roca

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 11:53 AM

some ideas, even if a bit confused ;)

I really hope they do not turn one design.
this is the best race ever, great interest for those who love sailing. I think that keeping this same rule will help lower costs and make performances very close. A bit like inAC class 2007. great show and great racing.
I bet this generation of boats will be competitive also in next volvo. I hope sanderson finally does something good proving this point. In my opinion with a little more time to prepear properly they could have been competitive in some legs. I think it would be important to get more teams less professional: for example, wouldn't it be better if there were 3 or 4 chinese sailors on sanya, with all the mcm contents.. same on abu dabi couldn't they take more than one lcal sailor?
I am sorry soldini didn't make it to the start, I am sure the italian team could build lot of interest (like the french boat), he was thinking way lass than20 millions if I remember weel.
Groupama could easily race in next edition with this same boat, some young franch sailor mixed with this top team with a fraction of his actual budget, and I wouldn't bet against some good results...
the real problem is economical crisis, but this means it is time to keep calm and defend the good things for better times, not destroying them.


the points system has been the salvation of this race and has made things so interesting and exciting with all to be decided.

What I would like to give even more interest? I would like this same points system with more offshore races as short legs, for example: how about making a first leg with the middle sea race, than a leg at syd-hobart (thay did that once with vo60 right?), and maybe finishing with the fastnet? How would you like this year volvo to be decided at a fastnet?
Or making a volvo series for racing this classic in the years off RTW? this would give more return to sponsors and more emotions to us. The acts worked well with AC to hel p

#49 bbr

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 12:29 PM

the points system has been the salvation of this race and has made things so interesting and exciting with all to be decided.


The points system is the worst thing that ever happened to this race... Before the points system this was a GREAT race, now it's just a joke.

Bill

#50 oioi

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 12:30 PM

* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss.



sorry, dont believe this. a bunch of the imoca sponsors (Foncia, P-V, Veolia - now out,Rothschild) have jumped to the MOD70, which is one design.


It is intetresting to compare the numbers for the MOD70 (a new design, and not quite a round the world race) to the numbers for the Volvo.

#51 gybe-ho!

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 12:49 PM


* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss.



sorry, dont believe this. a bunch of the imoca sponsors (Foncia, P-V, Veolia - now out,Rothschild) have jumped to the MOD70, which is one design.


It is intetresting to compare the numbers for the MOD70 (a new design, and not quite a round the world race) to the numbers for the Volvo.


True, but mainly French Sponsors or markets. Possibly a return to the ORMA60 type model of regattas?

#52 mad

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 01:23 PM

What is the biggest sailing fleet in the world? Take that and use that formula if you want it to work . To have one designer is ridiculous.Have a team of designers that can come up with something. If boats do not finish a leg they are out .Its called sailing round the world not bloody piggy back.It seems to me they are trying to run before they walk.1st it was kanting keels , sorted , now its build ,they need to get that right then move on.One design round the planet thats fast and works and brings more teams to the startline. Yes Please. Oh and as for Abu ,get your night watch drivers and trimmers sorted ,ya going backwards at night.

That's a joke................ right?

#53 Carboninit

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 02:20 PM


What is the biggest sailing fleet in the world? Take that and use that formula if you want it to work . To have one designer is ridiculous.Have a team of designers that can come up with something. If boats do not finish a leg they are out .Its called sailing round the world not bloody piggy back.It seems to me they are trying to run before they walk.1st it was kanting keels , sorted , now its build ,they need to get that right then move on.One design round the planet thats fast and works and brings more teams to the startline. Yes Please. Oh and as for Abu ,get your night watch drivers and trimmers sorted ,ya going backwards at night.

That's a joke................ right?



The stats do not lye. And how are we today lord Mad.Abu is a pile of crap for the money spent .Fast inshore, crap offshore or is it called the volvo round the cans race and forget the ocean's.

#54 diggler

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 02:48 PM


* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss.



sorry, dont believe this. a bunch of the imoca sponsors (Foncia, P-V, Veolia - now out,Rothschild) have jumped to the MOD70, which is one design.


It is intetresting to compare the numbers for the MOD70 (a new design, and not quite a round the world race) to the numbers for the Volvo.


Foncia (Desjoyeaux) and Gitana are both hardcore multi afficionados and were more or less counting the days until something, anything, came along to replace the Orma. From what I've read, Mich actually hates that it's one design (and that there is no solo racing) but has decided crewed OD multi is a more interesting challenge than solo open monohull. So only P-V is really the only "jumper" you listed and from the press this decision has little to do with the OD aspect.

The scope of the MOD70 circuit, and the significantly smaller crew, means that the budget requirements for this class are much lower. This also largely has nothing to do with one design. A mainly Euro/Atlantic circuit with an occasional trip around through the canals has inherently less demands for shore support and logistics, regardless of boat size, number of hulls, or design rule. Given the current economic climate it is hardly surprising to see businesses that want to step up the rung with their sailing sponsorship are choosing a modest jump rather than the order of magnitude getting into the Volvo requires. And that again has little to do with the details of the design rule.

Basically, for the Volvo to remain the Volvo it is going to be one of the most expensive campaigns around. Regardless of the rule chosen. Regardless of length or number of hulls. Thats just how it works with the logistics of a staged around the world race with crews big enough to run the boats in performance mode all the time. Logistics would be easier if the boats were slower. A lot slower. But then it isn't the Volvo. It would be cheaper if there were no stops. But that is not the Volvo either. One design and it could still be the Volvo, not to me perhaps but in general appearance it would look the same. And the costs wouldn't be all that different either because it is still the same expensive, but high profile, recipe.

#55 Potter

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 02:48 PM



* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss.



sorry, dont believe this. a bunch of the imoca sponsors (Foncia, P-V, Veolia - now out,Rothschild) have jumped to the MOD70, which is one design.


It is intetresting to compare the numbers for the MOD70 (a new design, and not quite a round the world race) to the numbers for the Volvo.


True, but mainly French Sponsors or markets. Possibly a return to the ORMA60 type model of regattas?

Most of the teams who are happy with one design have already gone to MOD. There are only a few pushing for it in IMOCA, but they have a powerful voice.

#56 Ballast Technician

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 03:13 PM

The problem with going OD would be, as mentioned:

* that the boats are first and foremost not equal
* OD does not make racing cheaper (instead of big design fee you still have to pay a smaller design fee but also pay for more expensive tooling, additional measurements etcetera)
* Who is responsible (and who will want to take on responsibility): torn sail -> redress please ("normal use", "we would have never build it like that", etcetera), Chipped paint: redress please...
* Loss of sponsors: in IMOCA class (where the OD is also being pushed against the will of the current teams) a number of sponsors have announced publicly they will leave when OD is introduced. Not just a technology based sponsor such as Safran (who uses the boat to develop and showcase military technology applications) but also Hugo Boss. From having dealt with the guys who decide to pump 5-20m euros in an offshore racing project: not being OD is a security rather than a liability as it means the blame can be shifted. For OD class, you choose only the people and the rest is equal and loosing than means you have made a wrong investment decision. With the different designs you can at least point at the team going for a set of parameters (designer, builder etcetera) outside of the control and with a high chance of the boat at least solid in one area. In this race all new boats have won something so emphasis can be on quality in a certain area from PR/marketing POV.

As always, millions want to do the race (be it Volvo, IMOCA, AC or even an olympic campaign) but only a few get everything in place. When a number of people consistently manage to get organised I would like to think you'd want to listen to them. 33 cities have asked to be considered for a volvo stopover (at raison the 5m euro more or less) and are in a final round but although this creates income for the race, using more stopovers (and going away from the more traditional route and planning) will increase expense.

Speaking from the heart I think both Volvo and IMOCA need to stay fairly open rule classes/races to aid the development of sailing in general and I can live with reduced participation numbers.

Thinking with my head, I think the downsides of going OD and the implications on the organisers are detrimental perhaps not in the short term but definitely in the middle to long term. Imagine a boat not performing as advertised with a big firm backing a team, a measurement check shows the boat is not up to the rule standards and 10m euros has been pumped into the project I can see this going to court so the sponsor gets his money back. I remember from 2005-06 that ABN AMRO had a penalty clause in the contract with Volvo for a minimum required number of boats on the start line. If it had not been for the Ozzies (and the Dutchies paying a number of the bills throughout the race) the white boat had effectively raced around the world for free to the sponsor. In the case of OD I would advise the backers to ensure a clearly defined penalty clause is included in the agreement with both team and Volvo to ensure I get a fast OD and not a slow one. And then Volvo will pass on the risk to the designer/builder/management group and all of a sudden there have been 5 boats build, a company has gone bust and apart from a few individuals everybody looses. I've seen it in motor racing before where a 1m plus racecar had to be scrapped because the sum of all parts being just a little off the mark meant the package was not as advertised and therefore had to be replaced before it had driven a single yard... Yes the current format is unsustainable but I don't think the boat is the problem: the budget is more dependant on logistics and wages than on boat and sails or at least that was the case in 05-06 and 08-09.



+1. Gotta agree with most of that.

Re. budget, the split for the properly funded teams (i.e., everybody but Sanya) this time around is roughly equal between 1) boat (including R&D, rig, sails, etc.), 2) wages/people, and 3) logistics, other operational costs, etc. (Some might say category 1) is a slightly higher percentage and 3) a slightly lower one, but that is mostly a cost allocation game and 'message management' for the intended audience).

#57 tigger12

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 03:57 PM

The race used to run on a 4 year cycle--now it is three. Any talk of the number of entries being down because there is not enough time between races to organize a campaign?

#58 Left Hook

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 11:15 PM

Another (minor) factor with abandoning the VO70 rule is that all previously built boats would be made obsolete. Meaning that teams like Sanya or Delta Lloyd wouldn't have been able to do the last go-round because they started late and didn't have enough time for a build.

Also; if you have an evolving OD which changes with each iteration of the race then you run into the same quality (what is built well and what isn't?) and cost (new tooling, older boats obsolete, new development and designer costs) factors (albeit somewhat mitigated) as the current rule.

Not a huge issue but a factor nonetheless.

#59 mad

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 05:54 AM



What is the biggest sailing fleet in the world? Take that and use that formula if you want it to work . To have one designer is ridiculous.Have a team of designers that can come up with something. If boats do not finish a leg they are out .Its called sailing round the world not bloody piggy back.It seems to me they are trying to run before they walk.1st it was kanting keels , sorted , now its build ,they need to get that right then move on.One design round the planet thats fast and works and brings more teams to the startline. Yes Please. Oh and as for Abu ,get your night watch drivers and trimmers sorted ,ya going backwards at night.

That's a joke................ right?



The stats do not lye. And how are we today lord Mad.Abu is a pile of crap for the money spent .Fast inshore, crap offshore or is it called the volvo round the cans race and forget the ocean's.

Lord....?? Do you have a copy of the watch pattern? Do you really belive that the watchs stay fixed for 20 day plus legs?

#60 ~HHN92~

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 01:04 PM

Has any sporting event that has tried to cut costs actually succeeded?

NASCAR tried it, COT was supposed to cut back on 'specialty' cars for the various track configurations. They still build a lot of cars looking for an advantage. And even big teams, like Roush are struggling with sponsorship, in the 2nd most watched sport on US tv.

AC has tried it, but I do not see the problem as solved. Only 4 teams funded, 3 by billionaires.

Baseball, and NBA, NFL have salary caps, but .....so what? Tons of money gets spent on players, rising all the time.

No matter the format, if there is hope to find an advantage, the money will be spent. The more that can be raised the more that will be spent.

So, put on the best show you can and hope for the best. Any money savings that are found will be only trimming around the edges.

#61 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 02:27 PM

Not necessarily HHN. There is no doubt in anyone's mind that a one-design will significantly reduce costs, and that shorter stopovers, and less of them, will do the same.

Kenny's finally up. He weighs in with strong opinions as well. Check it.



#62 Heriberto

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 02:31 PM

Sounds like there is doubt in Ken's mind that a one design will save money. Certainly fewer, shorter stops will, but that also directly impacts sponsor return.

So how is that Clipper thing competing with the VOR?

#63 punter

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 03:23 PM

They still need to remember this race is the Everest of sailing. For sailing as a sport we still need to have this race as an aspiration.

#64 Mr. Fixit's brother,, Mr. Fixit

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 03:39 PM

Sure am glad the SpeedDream folks chimed in on the front page with their point of view. Just don't quite get that.

#65 Who's your daddy

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 04:26 PM

Not necessarily HHN. There is no doubt in anyone's mind that a one-design will significantly reduce costs, and that shorter stopovers, and less of them, will do the same.

Kenny's finally up. He weighs in with strong opinions as well. Check it.


I don't think shorter stopovers will save money. Personel is the biggest cost and shorter stopovers but the same work list means you need to employ more people, pay their airfares, put them up in hotels and feed them. If anything they need to make the stopovers longer so that less people can complete the necessary work.

#66 crashdog

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 04:32 PM

Sure am glad the SpeedDream folks chimed in on the front page with their point of view. Just don't quite get that.


Whatever the merits of the SpeedDream concept are, the analysis on box v. open rules does make a lot of sense. In the same way that box rules can allow for more innovation over measurement rules (think about the performance difference between IOR maxis and VO 70s), so open rules can allow for more innovation over box rules. It is an interesting concept to create a limit on power, which could be a measurement of sail area v. effective ballast. Or perhaps as the interview states, create a one-desgn measurement on mast/rig, sail area, ballast and foil dimension, and leave all other components open to the designer.

In application, you could take the winning boat (Groupama, Telefonica, Puma) and freeze the rig, sail area, ballast and foils for the next go around. This would allow the current winning boats to be used again, as well as allow for other innovations in hull shape in the next generation. Personally, I wouldn't freeze all the foils, and would allow for innovation in dagger boards and rudders.

#67 TRUTHPUPPETHATESUALL

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 05:37 PM

They still need to remember this race is the Everest of sailing. For sailing as a sport we still need to have this race as an aspiration.


Rant ON

HTFU. What a whiney bunch of little bitches you all are. What a bunch of crap on this thread.

Half this site goes on and on about friends don't let friends PHRF and how OD is all that, which is all good and fair, and then here, for VOR you take a dump on that very premise. HTFU.

Of course OD has the potential to save a lot of money if done right. Only an idiot would refute that. There are many, as in most, OD classes where the boats are all close enough in speed that it is the sailors and just the sailors that make the difference. But then it will be the Clipper you cry with your panties all bunched up in your manginas. HTFU. The Clipper is dumptruck boats sailed by sailors nobody knows or cares about.

If you like a box rule so much go watch the Americas Cup O'shit, run by rich dude desk jockies who are better able to spend a small country GDP than they could drive a boat. Even a simple one. If you want all out speed, boats that break and sink, designer contests, and boxes of money being spent, that have at the Americas Cup O'shit and HTFU while you are at it.

The VOR and its past was about the sailors. It was the sailor's Everest. Not freaking Farr's or JK or some other desk jockey pushing a pen and protractor. HTFU, and stop blowing the designers long enough to remember its about the sailors, about seamanship. Its their Everest.

So tell me again what is so bad about making the the current VO70s a bit stronger and OD to reduce costs. More sailors can now climb Everest and they don't need Sherpa Farr off The Mark to get them there. Now it is truely about the sailors and the routing. PERIOD! And the boats are still going to be blindingly fast. PERIOD

And bring back seamanship, how about?! Go back to elapsed time or dock one final position for every leg not completed under sail because it is not the Logistics and Shipping Department's Everest either.

But somebody tell me please when the heck did Farr and JK become God and the VOR all about them? Did they offer all you rail meat wanna-bes a job doing their laundry? HTFU. Its about the sailors, the routing and the seamanship. Or it should be. Giving the VOR an OD boat makes it more about that and also means more sailors can play.

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#68 roca

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 05:54 PM

HTFU. Its about the sailors, the routing and the seamanship.
The Truth Puppet That Hates You All


the withbread and now volvo are very much about the boats too. since the beginning, it's in the dna of this race.

#69 Heriberto

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:06 PM

Waaah waaaah, bring back elapsed times and "seamanship" and waah waaah. "In the past it was about the sailor's" waaahhh....

Who was it whinging with their panties in their mangina?

It's ALWAYS been about the boats, it has NEVER been one design. Holy fucking revisionist memory gap history.

FWIW, I think it will lose being what it is if it goes OD. I also think, and it's just a fucking opinion, that they could just as easily spend MORE and deliver LESS going OD. A very expensive Reverse Clipper is what it would be. Sure, some of the cheapest racing going is one design, but also some of the most expensive racing going is one design.

If they want to reduce the budgets, they could, oh, I don't know, IMPOSE BUDGETS....

Radical thought! Crazy even!

#70 TRUTHPUPPETHATESUALL

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:12 PM


HTFU. Its about the sailors, the routing and the seamanship.
The Truth Puppet That Hates You All


the withbread and now volvo are very much about the boats too. since the beginning, it's in the dna of this race.


The DNA of the race? Did Bruce blow on load on your face? Come on!

Back when the race was run in 6 knot shitboxes of different design, the sailors, seamanship and routing were still what determined the winner; not the designer.
'
Now we have Camper whining "my boat is too slow and the designer sucks, whaaa." Grow a pair and HTFU Camper.

Here comes Walker crying the same sob story. Somebody get him his bottle. HTFU Stu.

This race has become more about luck (timing of Puma's rig failure, Tele's weather window up SA), the designers and the Shipping and shore crews, than about the sailors. And most sailors can't even get in the game. What a shame.

The DNA of the race. Please. Go see Larry. He has a pier he wants you to paint.

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#71 dogwatch

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:12 PM

If they want to reduce the budgets, they could, oh, I don't know, IMPOSE BUDGETS....


Like party election budgets are capped? How well does that work out?

#72 ~HHN92~

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:14 PM

Not necessarily HHN. There is no doubt in anyone's mind that a one-design will significantly reduce costs, and that shorter stopovers, and less of them, will do the same.

Kenny's finally up. He weighs in with strong opinions as well. Check it.



I think that was an excellent interview. I agree totally with many of the points he makes.

One design may save costs, but will it sell? Shorter stopovers and less will make a difference, but is that just trimming fat? I agree with KR here, fix certain items as standards but give range in the hull design.

#73 Heriberto

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:19 PM

Ken says they saved millions building in the US over the European built boats, and they want to build the new, "cheaper" OD boats where? A consortium of connected builders in, you guessed it, Europe. So you wonder who's tail is wagging what dog (and I don't mean Clifford). Puma saved probably 15-20% on currency exchange rates alone.

Shorter and less stops isn't trimming fat, it's trimming meat. But it will be necessary to get a slower boat around the globe in the weather window.

That's good though, maybe it shouldn't be called the "Reverse Clipper", if they use Camper as the OD, they can call it the "Reverse Clifford".

#74 TRUTHPUPPETHATESUALL

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:26 PM

It's ALWAYS been about the boats, it has NEVER been one design. Holy fucking revisionist memory gap history.


Really?! Wow. I mean like I had like no idea it had like never been OD. OMG, Biff!

So just how Farr off the pace do you think Sanya is? Pretty small number. But no chance with today's routing capabilities and boats that can travel with weather systems.

Back in the days of revisionist history that small difference was of little or no consequence to the overall outcome. Sailors, seamanship and on-board routing were.

Reverse Clipper. Sure thing. Franck Cammas on a VO70OD that is just 5% slower due to a stronger design is the same thing as Joe Blow Nobody sailing a Clipper dumptruck.

Swallow some more Farr truth why don't you?

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#75 dogwatch

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:35 PM

Ken says they saved millions building in the US over the European built boats, and they want to build the new, "cheaper" OD boats where? A consortium of connected builders in, you guessed it, Europe. So you wonder who's tail is wagging what dog (and I don't mean Clifford). Puma saved probably 15-20% on currency exchange rates alone.


But that was then. € has weakened 20% against the US$ in the last year.

#76 Heriberto

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 06:58 PM

So you do know that it is the Farr office that is the one they want to pay to design the OD boat?

Hey! From worst to first!

More like Untruth puppet.

#77 josselin

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 08:52 PM

When I see the results of the VPLP + Guillaume Verdier design in Imoca vs JK chemine poujoulat or Hugo Boss results :rolleyes:, I do beleive these guys woudl have a great chance to design a pretty good boat.

Why not a design competition for the next VO one design: budget+crew and let the architect propose the best boat.

the figaro boats comes from there and the design is great

#78 DickDastardly

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 09:24 PM

There is an elephant in the room here.

Given the wealth of sport and other entertaiemt out there and Sailing's elitist profile perhaps Ocean Sailing won't ever turn a buck for sponsors. Maybe tge race is a dinosaur?

Back in the day boats were cheaper, sailors were cheaper, media costs were cheaper and more rich guys could afford to mount a team or line up a relatively modest commercial deal. Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

Maybe the boat doesn't matter? Given the escalation in costs in the sport combined with a growing reality that target markets around the world aren't very interested mean the race is dead?

I know people will argue that the in port stopovers prove me wrong, but who doesn't love a party? How does all that in-port action translate to minds glued to what's going on in the ocean legs and a return for Volvo and team sponsors? Not sure there's mUch at all.

Flame away

#79 CrushDigital

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 09:49 PM

There is an elephant in the room here.

Given the wealth of sport and other entertaiemt out there and Sailing's elitist profile perhaps Ocean Sailing won't ever turn a buck for sponsors. Maybe tge race is a dinosaur?

Back in the day boats were cheaper, sailors were cheaper, media costs were cheaper and more rich guys could afford to mount a team or line up a relatively modest commercial deal. Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

Maybe the boat doesn't matter? Given the escalation in costs in the sport combined with a growing reality that target markets around the world aren't very interested mean the race is dead?

I know people will argue that the in port stopovers prove me wrong, but who doesn't love a party? How does all that in-port action translate to minds glued to what's going on in the ocean legs and a return for Volvo and team sponsors? Not sure there's mUch at all.

Flame away


I'd argue the opposite, that the stops are way more important to sponsor returns then the time actually spent on the ocean legs. Besides those of us on this site and other like-minded individuals, the vast majority of sponsor exposure happens while the boats are sitting at docks.

I doubt sponsors give a shit whether or not their target audiences are glued to how the race between Miami and Lisbon is going. What they care about is that their is buzz in those ports and media coverage of the time the boats are arriving, hanging about and leaving again. Ocean racing is never going to have a massive rabid fan base, what is generating the return for sponsors is the casual interest drummed up when the boats show up somewhere.

#80 Heriberto

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 09:50 PM

DD,

I think in a lot of ways you are right, what is "wrong" isn't the boat, it's that the potential sponsors who would get the most out of it aren't involved (yet). What does it matter to Groupama or Telefonica that there has been an exponential growth in viewership and interest in China, which in raw numbers is a close second? That has no value at all to them. On the other hand, it has a LOT of value to Volvo, or Puma and even Camper, or any other retail chain or product or commodity producer that wants to expand it's market globally and into the largest, and fastest growing consumer population and economic power center on earth. And for Sanya, or Abu Dhabi, seeking to gain name recognition as a global tourist destination, this is excellent value! Now a cynic would say, "Of course Sanya bought a used boat, that's the Chinese way! Buy, copy and resell!".

Not every nation is like those in the West, where "yachting" is an "elite" sport. Even here in the US, I think that at the professional level, people are looking at the AC and VOR, not as a group of Richie Rich's, but exactly what it is, professional sport, funded by large corporations or corporate interests and players, just like all other sports are here. The only exception is the Kentucky Derby, which IS a bunch of Richie Rich's, but people relate to it despite that, because you can bet on the outcome!

Does Vegas even run a card on the Volvo?

#81 DickDastardly

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 11:04 PM



Flame away


I'd argue the opposite, that the stops are way more important to sponsor returns then the time actually spent on the ocean legs. Besides those of us on this site and other like-minded individuals, the vast majority of sponsor exposure happens while the boats are sitting at docks.

I doubt sponsors give a shit whether or not their target audiences are glued to how the race between Miami and Lisbon is going. What they care about is that their is buzz in those ports and media coverage of the time the boats are arriving, hanging about and leaving again. Ocean racing is never going to have a massive rabid fan base, what is generating the return for sponsors is the casual interest drummed up when the boats show up somewhere.

I tend to agree with you at one level, my point on the stopovers is the disconnect between domestic sponsors and markets that are irrelevant to them. But, you're sort-of describing the Extreme Sailing or AC45 World Series. Those are way more compelling as an in-port spectacle than the V070 fleet dukeing it out for a single 90 minute race a fair distance offshore, and off the-water they feature just as much colour and movement as VOR. So a cynic would say we may as well ship ALL the fleet from port to port...and if we did the commercial outcome for everyone would be much better - less boat breakage, lower insurance, less pro sailor costs, no weather complexities, guarranteed arrival times, cheaper boats, the list goes on and on.... :lol:

#82 DickDastardly

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 11:19 PM

DD,

I think in a lot of ways you are right, what is "wrong" isn't the boat, it's that the potential sponsors who would get the most out of it aren't involved (yet). What does it matter to Groupama or Telefonica that there has been an exponential growth in viewership and interest in China, which in raw numbers is a close second? That has no value at all to them. On the other hand, it has a LOT of value to Volvo, or Puma and even Camper, or any other retail chain or product or commodity producer that wants to expand it's market globally and into the largest, and fastest growing consumer population and economic power center on earth. And for Sanya, or Abu Dhabi, seeking to gain name recognition as a global tourist destination, this is excellent value! Now a cynic would say, "Of course Sanya bought a used boat, that's the Chinese way! Buy, copy and resell!".

Not every nation is like those in the West, where "yachting" is an "elite" sport. Even here in the US, I think that at the professional level, people are looking at the AC and VOR, not as a group of Richie Rich's, but exactly what it is, professional sport, funded by large corporations or corporate interests and players, just like all other sports are here. The only exception is the Kentucky Derby, which IS a bunch of Richie Rich's, but people relate to it despite that, because you can bet on the outcome!

Does Vegas even run a card on the Volvo?

You hit it on the head. Why isn't there major gambling on the VOR? Surely of there was significant interest and a belief in any sort of predictable outcome there would be!

I'm wondering whether Abu Dhabi and Sanya couldn't find more cost effective ways to push their brands... methinks yes. Sponsor a cricket team in the IPL, stage a Golf Tournament, whatever...

I think overall the broader market has a limited capacity to soak up professional sports funded by big corporates. Any number of types of football, depending on where you live, endless bat and ball sport (Cricket, Tennis, Golf, Baseball, Hockey etc.), basketball, Motor racing of many colours, and niche sports in different geographies like Table Tennis, Handball, Netball etc. consume most of the public bandwidth in most evolved markets. And, given sailing's status as a very small and niche sport with limited easy viewing and engagement options and an elitist brand image, then nno doubt it will be one of the first to feel the pain. This Yachting Australia-Commissioned research made interesting reading locally. Based on that, and the lack of a local stop over it's not surprising local interest in the VOR is zero to minimal outside the sailing fraternity. I wonder how much mainstream interest in midwest USA the VOR is generating?

#83 onimod

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 02:55 AM

Sponsors and effectiveness: wouldn't one of the attractive parts for the VOR currently be the clarity of the sponsor message?
There are relatively few sponsors and very little market overlap between those few sponsors.
There is also the 'cache' of being part of that small group which is generally pretty respectable.
I think that's worth a lot to some sponsors as opposed to say NASCAR where there is sponsorship saturation and you can find your say (made up example out of thin air) Champagne being advertised next to a $2 shop.
I can see scenarios where the cost of entry is lowered greatly, only to result in an exodus of current sponsors.
Sure, if the incoming sponsors outweigh the old one then it's great, but I can see potential for that not to be the case too.
If radical change is required, I'm not sure a hardware (boat) change is going to deliver it.

Personally I'm still struggling with the idea that a one design is the saviour when we've already got a class where performance is effectively one design across the front half of the fleet.
I think you need to quantify where the evolution between the last two generations came from.
If the same evolution isn't likely in the next three years then changing the design can only increase the cost of a similar boat.
Certainly in F1 stability reduces costs, but at the same time if teams want to win they will access more funds and spend more - that's just reality.

How about a simple rule - "you can only own one boat at a time", forcing returning campaigns to sell their boat to a (guaranteed) new entrant before they build a new one?

#84 crashdog

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 04:00 AM

There is an elephant in the room here. [snip]

...

Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

...


Getting sponsors in the days of Whitbread was complicated by the fact that Whitbread was a drinks company. At the time, in sailing, there were two obvious sponsor groups - drinking and insurance / financial services. When I went to other global drinks companies other than beer, I got the "how does participating in a drinks company sponsored race help us?" Even though the title sponsor was a small beer company, it was a dance. Getting sponsorship from automobile and resource companies was much easier.

Presently, in sailing, there are two obvious sponsor groups that appeal to the sailing audience - drinking and insurance / financial services (okay, maybe communications, too). Isn't sailing a big enough market to have a core sponsor of a campaign be focussed on that sailing market? In the France model, they certainly tie up financial services and communications. In this race, there are a couple of core sport lead sponsors (tele and group) but where are the drinks companies? InBev anyone? Or even more likely - Bacardi-Martini? Surely the sport itself is large enough to support a clearly measurable sponsor or two (or three or four) campaigns. We are not doing enough. We, the sailing guys, should be driving the sponsorship efforts so that our interests are best served. This would serve to overwhelm the rift between what the sailing crowd wants and what the shoe buying crowd is assumed to want.

Another throwaway example: One of the larger pools of capital in the world is held in the China insurance industry, which is actively working on global joint ventures to expand its presence globally. Talk about an obvious target. And one, which if approached correctly, would see the benefit of partnering with a high performance team in a sport that has the profile of sailing.

It's not shoes that should sponsor (except Aigle). Sponsorship opportunities are right in our "ahem" wheelhouse.

#85 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 04:14 AM

There is an elephant in the room here.

Given the wealth of sport and other entertaiemt out there and Sailing's elitist profile perhaps Ocean Sailing won't ever turn a buck for sponsors. Maybe tge race is a dinosaur?

Back in the day boats were cheaper, sailors were cheaper, media costs were cheaper and more rich guys could afford to mount a team or line up a relatively modest commercial deal. Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

Maybe the boat doesn't matter? Given the escalation in costs in the sport combined with a growing reality that target markets around the world aren't very interested mean the race is dead?

I know people will argue that the in port stopovers prove me wrong, but who doesn't love a party? How does all that in-port action translate to minds glued to what's going on in the ocean legs and a return for Volvo and team sponsors? Not sure there's mUch at all.

Flame away

Telefonica is I think the second largest telecom company in the world in terms of customer base, in about 40 countries at last count. Second largest telecom in Ireland and Brazil, largest in much of Centroamerica. Volvo is massive. Abu Dhabi is trying to reach bankers, event planners, and tourists all over the globe. I'd say actually that Groupama is the only one of the boats that doesn't need to reach a global market, though their part in the VOR was a piece of an expansion strategy that has lost a lot of way since they committed to the VOR thanks to economic issues.

#86 Swanno (Ohf Shore)

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 04:30 AM

Could a pinnacle event, like the VOR (AC ect), be run on a small budget?

If you want your boat to win, you will pay for the best crew, best boat and best sails and expect to win.

I for one hope they don’t simplify the race by dumbing down the boats. The old VOR tagline was ‘life at the extreme’. 'Life at the mundane’ doesn’t really have the same ring to it.

The 2011 ISAF world sailing championships in Perth apparently cost $21 million and that ran for a fortnight. Compare that to a VOR campaign which runs for 2-3 years and truly goes around the world. If I had millions, I know what I would throw my money at.

As I suggested before, I would love to see 60 – 65 foot boats, a sort of mix between tp52’s and VO70’s, which can withstand heavy breeze, big waves and big miles.

Does anyone remember that fleet of 80 footers that were built in Europe the 90's which was meant to race around the world? I think one of them bacame the first Nicorette. That failed. There was also the Antatrica Cup from the early/mid 2000's which was meant to have a fleet of 70 footers made from Fiberglass to make budgets lower, that failed.

VOR is a pinnacle event. Yes to making the boats smaller, but keep it a design race as well.

#87 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 04:33 AM

DD,

I think in a lot of ways you are right, what is "wrong" isn't the boat, it's that the potential sponsors who would get the most out of it aren't involved (yet). What does it matter to Groupama or Telefonica that there has been an exponential growth in viewership and interest in China, which in raw numbers is a close second? That has no value at all to them. On the other hand, it has a LOT of value to Volvo, or Puma and even Camper, or any other retail chain or product or commodity producer that wants to expand it's market globally and into the largest, and fastest growing consumer population and economic power center on earth. And for Sanya, or Abu Dhabi, seeking to gain name recognition as a global tourist destination, this is excellent value! Now a cynic would say, "Of course Sanya bought a used boat, that's the Chinese way! Buy, copy and resell!".

Not every nation is like those in the West, where "yachting" is an "elite" sport. Even here in the US, I think that at the professional level, people are looking at the AC and VOR, not as a group of Richie Rich's, but exactly what it is, professional sport, funded by large corporations or corporate interests and players, just like all other sports are here. The only exception is the Kentucky Derby, which IS a bunch of Richie Rich's, but people relate to it despite that, because you can bet on the outcome!

Does Vegas even run a card on the Volvo?

You really need to question your assumptions, and realize that you may not have a clue why a sponsor is actually in the race, or how much they are actually in for.

For instance, would it surprise you to learn that Volvo was more insistent on having China as a team and stopover than even Sanya was? I can't really say more, but guess where Volvo Heavy Equipment's biggest market now is.

Again, what you see is not necessarily, or even usually, what's going on. Check the front page tomorrow for more details.

#88 dogwatch

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 05:47 AM

Is the boat the major outlay or is it actually people?


It isn't either/or. The boat and people costs are linked. Large, complicated boats need more shore crew and more involved logistics than small, simple boats.

The first thing I think about is that any change effectively writes off 4 very competitive (and one that might be) boats and everyone to start from scratch next time.
That doesn't sound cheap.


And what's become of every single VOR 70 ever built before the current round? Except Sanya, invariably DFL. Once the boats have crossed the finish line in Galway, they are more or less worth-less in any case.

#89 roca

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:03 AM

Getting sponsors in the days of Whitbread was complicated by the fact that Whitbread was a drinks company. At the time, in sailing, there were two obvious sponsor groups - drinking and insurance / financial services.


you forget cigaretts: merit, silk cut, rothmans, fortuna...

Anyone knows wheather alcoholic drinks' brands can sponsor in the volvo now? (with stop over in usa, uk, abi dhabi, etc..)

#90 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:07 AM


There is an elephant in the room here. [snip]

...

Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

...

[Snip]
Presently, in sailing, there are two obvious sponsor groups that appeal to the sailing audience - drinking and insurance / financial services (okay, maybe communications, too). Isn't sailing a big enough market to have a core sponsor of a campaign be focussed on that sailing market? In the France model, they certainly tie up financial services and communications. [Snip]

I suspect the phrase "Sailing Market" is a problem. It's tiny, look at the USA. Most of the country doesn't sail or follow the sport, makes sense... This is why Volvo's strategy has been to make the race more interesting to the "non-sailing involved" in many markets touched around the world.

In France (I lived there quite a few years) even 20 years ago broad public awareness of the sport (primarily deep ocean racing) was relatively high. Despite most of the country having little direct affinity with the sea, French ultra nationalism adopted sailors as national icons pretty much as soon as the likes of Eric Tabarly, Alain Colas and many many others started chalking up wins in global events 40 or 50 years ago. And when not doing that they chalked up wind in Franco-Francais events such as the Route du Rhum linking bits of the imaginary French empire. So, all sorts of oddball domestic French food producers, Financial Services companies, even building and DIY products suppliers, even electricity generators support sailing financially comfortable believing they'll get a benefit. That said, I wouldn't mind betting that the big state owned outfits like Areva, Safran etc. get leaned on by the French Government to sponsor sailing as a way of projecting French national pride and technology branding across the globe. Can anyone else explain to my why a French Nuclear Power station operator would sponsor an AC team?

So seems to me that imagining that brands allied to sailing would be natural sponsors is a bit off teh mark. I don't see much visible sail maker, hardware or sailing gear support of the race - only in-kind stuff on the boats supported by the odd logo, label and magazine advertisement.

#91 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:13 AM


There is an elephant in the room here.

Given the wealth of sport and other entertaiemt out there and Sailing's elitist profile perhaps Ocean Sailing won't ever turn a buck for sponsors. Maybe tge race is a dinosaur?

Back in the day boats were cheaper, sailors were cheaper, media costs were cheaper and more rich guys could afford to mount a team or line up a relatively modest commercial deal. Remember Whitbread? That beer was barely sold outside the UK so global media coverage didn't matter. Iin port stopovers didn't matter too much either. Even mow, Groupama and Telefonica are essentially domestic brands. Do they get much out of a stopover in Miami?

Maybe the boat doesn't matter? Given the escalation in costs in the sport combined with a growing reality that target markets around the world aren't very interested mean the race is dead?

I know people will argue that the in port stopovers prove me wrong, but who doesn't love a party? How does all that in-port action translate to minds glued to what's going on in the ocean legs and a return for Volvo and team sponsors? Not sure there's mUch at all.

Flame away

Telefonica is I think the second largest telecom company in the world in terms of customer base, in about 40 countries at last count. Second largest telecom in Ireland and Brazil, largest in much of Centroamerica. Volvo is massive. Abu Dhabi is trying to reach bankers, event planners, and tourists all over the globe. I'd say actually that Groupama is the only one of the boats that doesn't need to reach a global market, though their part in the VOR was a piece of an expansion strategy that has lost a lot of way since they committed to the VOR thanks to economic issues.

From Telefónica's web site: "Telefónica as a brand will play a corporate and institutional role all over the world with Movistar and O2. The brands under which the commercial offer will be structured in its respective countries are Movistar for Spain and Latin American and O2 in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Czech Republic and Slovakia."

So Telefónica is an Institutional brand - not a consumer brand, even in Spain and Latam. So they have little or no interest in stoking up public brand awareness for the Telefónica name outside those markets, and brand awareness through this type of sponsorship deal is meaningless in a corporate or institutional sense outside hospitality driven stuff in the various stopovers - where I'm sure it has some relevance.

and of course Volvo is a big consumer brand - and indeed a big corporate and institutional brand, but I'd wonder how much traction the B2B side of the brand would get through sponsoring the race, other than, again, corporate schmoozing and hospitality in the various ports.

#92 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:20 AM

You really need to question your assumptions, and realize that you may not have a clue why a sponsor is actually in the race, or how much they are actually in for.

For instance, would it surprise you to learn that Volvo was more insistent on having China as a team and stopover than even Sanya was? I can't really say more, but guess where Volvo Heavy Equipment's biggest market now is.

Again, what you see is not necessarily, or even usually, what's going on. Check the front page tomorrow for more details.

No, wouldn't surprise me at all. So why wouldn't they just sponsor a stopover or a Chinese boat rather than a whole race? Heavy equipment buyers are not very brand driven. They buy on price and functional requirements, lubricated a little (but not much, and decreasingly as markets mature) by schmoozing, relationship based selling and graft.

And Clean, generally one can't rely on marketing people to admit that their reasons for pouring money into something don't stack up after the fact. The race and Sponsors Marketing folk have a rather unhealthy symbiotic relationship in this respect, they'll all be singin' its praises loud bro' - they need to to suit their own interests. D'Oh...

#93 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:42 AM

Like I said, question your assumptions. I suggest that the public doesn't actually know who is sponsoring what, and that the name on the side of the boat is often a small part of the story.

You don't need to take too many orders for 100 giant dump trucks to make just about any sponsorship agreement pay. Same with Berg Propulsion, who I think will likely be back for the next race with or without PUMA. Know what a new ship's propellor costs? Somewhere between say 500k and a million. You know how many ships the average Berg hospitality client owns or manages? 200.

Note something: I do not believe that the B to B/hospitality part of the race is the more important part - quite the opposite. I think the race MUST focus on building its fan base while maximizing stopover footfall and mainstream exposure. In my eyes, if you focus on only the corporates and the experience for the wealthy, you lose the fans and the general public. Once you lose them, it stops being one of those "must-do" events, and instead of feeling special, the VIPs start feeling like pampered fools, paying attention to something no one else is. If you focus on the fans, the media, and getting max crowds, you create the kind of atmosphere that everyone - the poor and rich alike - want to get in on.

#94 Pierre S

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 12:20 PM

I believe there is a significant benefit for companies like Telefónica and Groupama to get their brand out to new markets like China and Brazil where their presence is weak. Compared to the alternatives (buying media time etc.) sailing can be pretty cost efficient if you know how to go about it and provided the people at the local venue do a good job of generating some buzz around the event. The people in Itajai seem to have been able to do that. Let's see what Lisbon, Lorient and Galway can produce.
I agree with Dick Dastardly: living in France in the 70s and 80s you would hear all these sponsor names on the main evening news on the radio or TV. Some were the weirdest names: Lada Poch (Russian car imports), Bagages Superior (luggage). More recently: PRB (building materials), Cheminées Poujolat (chimneys!), Vibrac Paprec (recycling and animal feed) etc. How else would these small companies reach wide audiences and build a positive image?



#95 Serge A. Storms

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 01:17 PM

Does anyone remember that fleet of 80 footers that were built in Europe the 90's which was meant to race around the world? I think one of them bacame the first Nicorette. That failed. There was also the Antatrica Cup from the early/mid 2000's which was meant to have a fleet of 70 footers made from Fiberglass to make budgets lower, that failed.
[/quote]

Where did that fleet go wrong? I remember that being put together by Pierre Fehlmann- The boats (designed by Farr?) looked pretty cool and the idea seemed to make sense... What happened?

#96 Heriberto

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 01:34 PM


DD,

I think in a lot of ways you are right, what is "wrong" isn't the boat, it's that the potential sponsors who would get the most out of it aren't involved (yet). What does it matter to Groupama or Telefonica that there has been an exponential growth in viewership and interest in China, which in raw numbers is a close second? That has no value at all to them. On the other hand, it has a LOT of value to Volvo, or Puma and even Camper, or any other retail chain or product or commodity producer that wants to expand it's market globally and into the largest, and fastest growing consumer population and economic power center on earth. And for Sanya, or Abu Dhabi, seeking to gain name recognition as a global tourist destination, this is excellent value! Now a cynic would say, "Of course Sanya bought a used boat, that's the Chinese way! Buy, copy and resell!".

Not every nation is like those in the West, where "yachting" is an "elite" sport. Even here in the US, I think that at the professional level, people are looking at the AC and VOR, not as a group of Richie Rich's, but exactly what it is, professional sport, funded by large corporations or corporate interests and players, just like all other sports are here. The only exception is the Kentucky Derby, which IS a bunch of Richie Rich's, but people relate to it despite that, because you can bet on the outcome!

Does Vegas even run a card on the Volvo?

You really need to question your assumptions, and realize that you may not have a clue why a sponsor is actually in the race, or how much they are actually in for.

For instance, would it surprise you to learn that Volvo was more insistent on having China as a team and stopover than even Sanya was? I can't really say more, but guess where Volvo Heavy Equipment's biggest market now is.

Again, what you see is not necessarily, or even usually, what's going on. Check the front page tomorrow for more details.



Jesus Clean,

I don't exactly know why your default mode is to be a pompous ass but you've been that way toward me since the first time I met you, when Petey hooked you up on my powerboat for the NCASA and you didn't even bother to thank me for ferrying you around and letting you burn my fuel.

What you said was exactly my point and I've said the same thing about India and Mumbai, where I'm sure Volvo and other sponsors would also be highly interested in having a stop. And yeah, I know what heavy equipment costs, because I buy this stuff for a living. I even know how much propellers cost. So no, that wouldn't "surprise" me, because that is exactly what I wrote.

We have a lot of mutual close friends Alan, and I'm trying to sell someone you DON"T know that the VOR and other sailing and sport sponsorship is a good deal for him. He is head of the push to expand his $30billion corporation in emerging markets like China, India and SE Asia. Being tied in with one of those teams, at least, I think would be great marketing for them and God knows they have the money to burn. Hell, a few years ago they spent $100million on one fucking domain name. I'm not sure what genius decided that was a good idea, but it gives you an idea, if you didn't already have one, of what corporations are willing to spend if they are sold on the value.

So I asked one our mutual friends for someone who knew how to pitch this and was told you were, quote "surprisingly good" at this. But I couldn't use you for that, even if I wanted to, because you've been a dick to me. So why don't you cut out the edgy, "Mr. Superior" act? It doesn't always help you, because you don't always know what opportunity you are screwing up for yourself.

Oh, and I actually like the interviews. Well done on those. It pays when you have engaging talent like Ken Read.

#97 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 02:04 PM

Does anyone remember that fleet of 80 footers that were built in Europe the 90's which was meant to race around the world? I think one of them bacame the first Nicorette. That failed. There was also the Antatrica Cup from the early/mid 2000's which was meant to have a fleet of 70 footers made from Fiberglass to make budgets lower, that failed.


Where did that fleet go wrong? I remember that being put together by Pierre Fehlmann- The boats (designed by Farr?) looked pretty cool and the idea seemed to make sense... What happened?

IIRC the boats (yes Farr Design 309) were a blown up Volvo 60 more or less, water ballasted fixed keel. Maybe 7 or 8 were built?
I think I recall the planned global ocean race being dropped as it couldn't get support alongside the WOR / VOR but I'm a little surprised they didn't get picked up for some sort of Clipper Style race later on - maybe too high maintenance?

#98 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 02:09 PM

I believe there is a significant benefit for companies like Telefónica and Groupama to get their brand out to new markets like China and Brazil where their presence is weak. Compared to the alternatives (buying media time etc.) sailing can be pretty cost efficient if you know how to go about it and provided the people at the local venue do a good job of generating some buzz around the event. The people in Itajai seem to have been able to do that. Let's see what Lisbon, Lorient and Galway can produce.
I agree with Dick Dastardly: living in France in the 70s and 80s you would hear all these sponsor names on the main evening news on the radio or TV. Some were the weirdest names: Lada Poch (Russian car imports), Bagages Superior (luggage). More recently: PRB (building materials), Cheminées Poujolat (chimneys!), Vibrac Paprec (recycling and animal feed) etc. How else would these small companies reach wide audiences and build a positive image?


But, neither Telefónica or Groupama actually operate under those Brand Names in the new markets you mention so there's not much point telling the Chinese public about Telefonica. Those brands aren't designed for public consumption at all, they are Business-To-Business Brands.

The French brands you mention are all consumer brands or close to it in a market where the broad public is highly into sailing so their sponsorship proposition works.

#99 knucklehead

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 02:13 PM


Does anyone remember that fleet of 80 footers that were built in Europe the 90's which was meant to race around the world? I think one of them bacame the first Nicorette. That failed. There was also the Antatrica Cup from the early/mid 2000's which was meant to have a fleet of 70 footers made from Fiberglass to make budgets lower, that failed.


Where did that fleet go wrong? I remember that being put together by Pierre Fehlmann- The boats (designed by Farr?) looked pretty cool and the idea seemed to make sense... What happened?

IIRC the boats (yes Farr Design 309) were a blown up Volvo 60 more or less, water ballasted fixed keel. Maybe 7 or 8 were built?
I think I recall the planned global ocean race being dropped as it couldn't get support alongside the WOR / VOR but I'm a little surprised they didn't get picked up for some sort of Clipper Style race later on - maybe too high maintenance?


Pierre Fehlmann's Grand Mistral organisation went bust & the boats were bought by none other than Ernesto Bertarelli. The circuit operated for a while, before the boats were sold off;

MAXI ONE-DESIGN RACING
(The following is an excerpt from a feature by Barry Pickthall in the December issue of Seahorse magazine.) The world of sailing has had its fair share of big hitters, but none perhaps with the ambitions of Ernesto Bertarelli, the 34-year-old head of Swiss pharmaceutical group Ares-Serono SA, who has taken a controlling interest in developing a Formula One-style world series for an eight-strong fleet of 80ft one-design maxis.

There was Mike Vanderbilt, the American railroad heir whose wealth and drive kept the America's Cup firmly bolted down with the magnificent - and definitive - J Class defenders Enterprise, Rainbow and Ranger. Then there were the British, aircraft manufacturer Thomas Sopwith, with two Endeavours, and tea baron Thomas Lipton, who made no fewer than five (failed) attempts on the Holy Grail with a succession of Shamrocks. But none could ever boast having eight maxi yachts at their disposal.

Bertarelli, the major shareholder in the $5 billion publically quoted Ares-Serono, has no such interest in the America's Cup, but he does have plans to make an impressive splash by taking his fleet of yachts to prestigious corners of the world and put on a headline grabbing spectacle. 'These boats are very exciting to sail, and because they are all equal they can generate extremely close racing. They produce a spectacle, and, with on-board cameras, helicopter coverage and top names at the wheel, it's a perfect sport for TV,' says Bertarelli.

Putting money where the proverbial mouth lies, he paid to bring 100 or more top sailors from the America's Cup, Admiral's Cup and Whitbread Race to compete on five of the Bruce Farr Maxi One-designs (formerly Grand Mistral/Ericsson 80s) at the recent Sardinia Cup series at Porto Cervo. And to underline his own competitive streak, he beat them all in a tightly fought six-race series. It was no walk-over, however, for though his Swiss team won three of the heats, the final result went to the wire. 'The Swiss sailed extremely well. The boats are very close in speed and Ernesto and his crew were simply the most consistent. They deserved to win,' conceded Silk Cut skipper Lawrie Smith, whose British entry won the first race but faded thereafter.

Bertarelli was ecstatic, not only with winning, but with the support he gained during the week for the series of major regattas and long-distance races planned for next year. Having bought the five-strong former Grand Mistral fleet from BIL, the original Grand Mistral bank, that had developed cold feet over another revival scheme proposed by Pierre Fehlmann, Bertarelli has funded the completion of the three boats left part-built near Marseilles and has guaranteed a multi-million dollar world championship series in 1999.

The World Series kicks off with the Caribbean Cup; Key West in January, the 500-mile Montego Bay Race in February, the Heineken St Maarten Regatta, and the Heineken International Cup in Puerto Rico in March . This will be followed by a fleet race to break the transatlantic monohull record from New York to the Lizard in April, when the weather promises its worst.

The new class' world championship, now ratified by ISAF, is made up of the North Sea Race and North Sea Regatta in May, Kiel Week and a 300-mile race on to Stockholm in June - in time to compete in the Round Gotland Race on 4 July. Then, at the end of July, and with a nod to tradition, the fleet will congregate at Cowes for the 220-mile Channel Race and four races within Skandia Cowes Week, before setting off on the decider: the Fastnet classic. The year rounds off with four separate seven-race series, in Lisbon at the end of August, Porto Cervo and Cannes in September, finishing at Monaco in early October. -- Barry Pickthall

For the full story: http://www.seahorse....dec/default.htm

#100 DickDastardly

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 02:19 PM

Like I said, question your assumptions. I suggest that the public doesn't actually know who is sponsoring what, and that the name on the side of the boat is often a small part of the story.

You don't need to take too many orders for 100 giant dump trucks to make just about any sponsorship agreement pay. Same with Berg Propulsion, who I think will likely be back for the next race with or without PUMA. Know what a new ship's propellor costs? Somewhere between say 500k and a million. You know how many ships the average Berg hospitality client owns or manages? 200.

Note something: I do not believe that the B to B/hospitality part of the race is the more important part - quite the opposite. I think the race MUST focus on building its fan base while maximizing stopover footfall and mainstream exposure. In my eyes, if you focus on only the corporates and the experience for the wealthy, you lose the fans and the general public. Once you lose them, it stops being one of those "must-do" events, and instead of feeling special, the VIPs start feeling like pampered fools, paying attention to something no one else is. If you focus on the fans, the media, and getting max crowds, you create the kind of atmosphere that everyone - the poor and rich alike - want to get in on.

Clean, you make zero sense.

Sure propellers cost a bomb. So do big fuck-off dump trucks. Who buys them? Engineers, Executives, Naval Architects and Procurement folk in major Corporates all over the planet. These people are in western markets held accountable for purchase decisions and need to demonstrate to their bosses that they selected what they purchased for squillions using some sort of objective fact based assessment process deliveringvalue for money, safety, good environmental outcomes, whatever. Corporate hospitality has limited influence on these decisions in mature markets. In less mature markets where accountability isn't so strong, sure, it's effectively bribery and it works. So, there has to be a bit of B22B largesse at play.

But none of this has anything to do with building a "fan base" in the broader general public. They have no input to any of those purchase decisions, so what the fuck is the point of getting them engaged in your sponsorship of a sailing race if you sell propellers for Oil Tankers? Please explain. Is it really all about your VIPs feeling more special because instead of 10 people outside who can't come into the corporate hospitality tent there are 10,000? That's rich, dude.




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