Volvo Ocean Race unveils details of Cardiff stopover
– Wales chosen as transatlantic leg stopover for the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18
– Debut visit to Wales for world’s leading offshore race
– Race returns to UK for first time in over a decade.
Cardiff has been chosen as the destination for the first Volvo Ocean Race transatlantic leg to the United Kingdom in 12 years when the world’s leading offshore race makes its debut visit to Wales in 2018.
The transatlantic leg is traditionally one of the nine-month event’s biggest highlights and toughest tests for sailors in often challenging conditions.
During a press conference, Adolfo Rodriguez from the Volvo Ocean Race joined Welsh Government Minister for Economy, Science and Transport, Edwina Hart and the City of Cardiff Council Leader, Councillor Phil Bale to announce that Cardiff had been chosen as the transatlantic stopover, when the race will call from May 25-June 10.
Sailors will leave Newport, Rhode Island, U.S., on May 20 and will cross approximately2,900 nautical miles until they reach Cardiff. The arrival date in Wales will depend on weather conditions.
Other stopovers already announced for the 2017-18 edition include Alicante (Spain), Cape Town (South Africa), Auckland (New Zealand), Cardiff (United Kingdom), Lisbon (Portugal) and Gothenburg (Sweden).
The 43-year-old Volvo Ocean Race is one of the world’s biggest and most prestigious sporting events. The round-the-world yacht race is held every three years and is widely regarded as one of the most challenging endurance events on the sporting calendar.
Antonio Bolanos Lopez, acting CEO, Volvo Ocean Race, said:
“Our stopover in Cardiff promises to be one of the real highlights of the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18. The event is returning to the United Kingdom for the first time in 12 years, but this is the first time our world-class fleet will have visited Wales, despite the country’s rich sea-faring tradition.
“Cardiff’s harbour will make the perfect backdrop for our boats, which will come after a thrilling transatlantic leg from Newport, Rhode Island.
“We are very confident that the Welsh race fans – and many more from overseas – will visit Cardiff in huge numbers during the stopover (insert dates here) to witness this spectacular event, meet the sailors, and see our boats close up for themselves. It will be an unforgettable memory for all of us.”
Minister for the Economy, Science and Transport, Edwina Hart, said: “It is excellent news that Wales has been chosen as the transatlantic stopover for this prestigious race. The Volvo Ocean Race is a truly global event and this stopover will be valuable in raising Wales’ profile on the world stage.
“Being a transatlantic stopover will give us added benefits of increased global media coverage and will be an excellent opportunity to look at key business opportunities in the US. Volvo Ocean Race’s arrival in Cardiff will mark another historic milestone in Wales’ rise as an outstanding destination for world-class events.
“Hosting a stopover in the Volvo Ocean Race will also generate a substantial economic boost for the Cardiff and Wales economy.
Cardiff Council Leader, Councillor Phil Bale, said: “Cardiff Council Leader, Councillor Phil Bale, said: “Cardiff is thrilled to be selected as a stopover port for this renowned event and the news further cements the city as a leading host destination for some of the world’s biggest sporting events.
“Working together the Council, Welsh Government, Cardiff Harbour Authority and Associated British Ports successfully beat off tough competition to host the event for the first time ever in Wales, and for the first time in the UK for over a decade. The event will showcase Cardiff, its culture, landscapes and people on a global stage as well as having a positive economic impact on the city and Wales.
“Cardiff is honoured to be hosting a sailing event of this calibre and we are delighted to be working with Volvo Ocean Race to deliver an absolutely fantastic event here in Cardiff.”
Following a competitive bidding process in 2012, Cardiff, with the support of the Welsh Government, was awarded the right to host a stopover in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-I8. It will be the only race stopover in the UK.
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