Cape Town a Volvo Ocean Race stop

14 October 2013

The beautiful city of Cape Town will feature as a stop for the 2014/15 Volvo Ocean Race. The city has a long history with the event, going back to the original Whitbread Around the World Race in 1973/74.

At the announcement of Cape Town’s inclusion on the Around the World route at the V&A Waterfront last month, Volvo Ocean Racing CEO Knut Frostad said: “Cape Town is an iconic city, and the sight of Table Mountain on the horizon as you approach the port at the end of Leg 1 is something every ocean racer looks forward to.”

Race route

The 2014/15 Volvo Ocean Race will begin in Alicante, Spain and head south some 6 500 nautical miles to Cape Town. The boats are expected in Cape Town at the end of October and beginning of November 2014.

There will be an in-port race on 15 November, followed by the departure of the fleet on 19 November for Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. From there, they will set sail for Sanya in China, followed by a leg to Auckland in New Zealand.

From there, the teams will head around Cape Horn before stopping at Itajai in Brazil. Heading north, the boats will next dock at Newport, Rhode Island on the east coast of the United States.

That will be followed by an Atlantic crossing to Lisbon in Portugal. Lorient, in France, will host the penultimate stop before the boats finish in Gothenburg, Sweden after covering a total distance of 39 379 nautical miles (72 930 kilometres).

‘A valuable boost’

Grant Pascoe, the city’s mayoral committee member for tourism, events and marketing, said Cape Town was delighted to be hosting the epic race.

“Not only does this race offer worldwide marketing exposure for Cape Town and raise the City and V&A Waterfront’s profile as a top leisure and events destination, it also provides a valuable boost for the many local industries through visitor and organiser spend,” Pascoe said.

Bruce Parker-Forsyth, the CEO of WorldSport, which is the host port delivery partner for Cape Town, said the partnership between the city, V&A Waterfront and WorldSport would result in an ocean legacy programme being set up before and continuing after the Volvo Ocean Race stopover.

For the next two editions of the race, the organisers have introduced a one-design Volvo 65 boat, which will allow teams to begin preparations much later than before and still be competitive.

SAinfo reporter and Volvo Ocean Race