The first Act of the 2013 Extreme Sailing Series is set to get underway on March 5th and the home nation invitational team for Act 1, Muscat, can finally be unveiled. Team Duqm Oman, with a crew including some of the kingpins of Extreme 40 sailing, will make it eight teams in the starting blocks completing a full-grid of Extreme 40s.
2013 Extreme Sailing Series Act 1 Muscat
Robert Greenhalgh (GBR), winner of the first-ever Extreme Sailing Series in 2007 at the helm of Basilica, will skipper Team Duqm Oman, sponsored by one of the world’s largest Special Economic Zones, Duqm, (a geographical designated Free Trade area) to the southeast of Oman. The question everyone dockside at The Wave, Muscat is asking is whether or not Greenhalgh still has that winning formula on the Extreme 40 race course and the stats would certainly suggest he does: three Volvo Ocean Races, seven Atlantic crossings, three World Championship and a host of European titles to his name make him one of the most diverse, and experienced sailors in the fleet.
'We won the Series in 2007 and came second in 2008 but things have obviously evolved since then; more competitive teams, more boats. I think the racing is probably a little more start dependent and everything has got a lot more professional and the manoeuvres are critical,' commented Greenhalgh. 'It will be a lot harder than it used to be and we have focused on getting the boat handling nailed down. I will have to get used to the new race format and the reaching starts and focus on making it happen for us on the water.'
Greenhalgh is joined by Extreme 40 heavyweights Andrew Walsh (GBR), who shared skipper duties of GAC Pindar in 2012, and Will Howden (GBR), an Olympic Tornado crew who came second in the 2012 Series with Oman Air. Bleddyn Mon (GBR), who competed at four Acts with The Wave, Muscat in 2012 and Omani bowman Nasser Al Mashari complete the Team Duqm Oman line-up.
Team Duqm Oman
North Sails, the world’s leading sailmaker, have become the Official Sailmaker to the Extreme Sailing Series, joining a growing family of Series Official Partners including SAP, Marinepool, EDOX and GAC Pindar as we enter the final countdown to Act 1 of the seventh season.
North Sails has earned their position as a world leader through an ongoing commitment to making sails that are faster, lighter and longer lasting than any other sails in the world. Their commitment to designing and building sails that guarantee performance, but identical One Design consistency, has made them the manufacturer of choice for the Extreme 40 teams since 2009. Bruno Dubois, Vicepresident of North Sails Europe noted: 'We have followed the Extreme 40 class since the beginning and have a long-standing relationship with both the organisers OC Sport and the teams. This new partnership will take that to the next level and through the association with one of the most exciting classes around, we hope to be able to leverage the partnership in the future.'
Mark Turner, Executive Chairman at OC Sport, organisers of the Extreme Sailing Series said: 'We are delighted to officially welcome North Sails as a Partner to the Extreme Sailing Series. Their unrivalled experience makes them an obvious choice for us and they are a brand both the teams and us believe in which is hugely important in a one-design class.' Turner continued: 'It has been a busy start to 2013 for us; we signed EDOX as our official timekeeper, Marinepool have renewed their clothing partnership until 2016 and last week we announced Aberdeen Asset Management would be the Singapore Host Venue Partner. Now the team is busy getting ready for the Series opener at The Wave, Muscat and the crew line-ups this year look like one of the strongest they have ever been in the seven year history of the circuit.'
The action gets underway tomorrow (5th March) in Oman where the teams will race in the stadium racing format synonymous with the Series. Champagne sailing conditions are on the forecast according to Official Weather Partners Wetterwelt; blue skies and a building sea breeze due to kick in for the afternoon’s racing. Online fans can watch the stadium racing live online from the sixth-8th March while fans onsite will have the expert commentary of Khamis Al Anbouri, part of the 2010 Extreme Sailing Series winning team, keeping them up to date with all the action.
Extreme Sailing Series, Act 1 Muscat, Team Lists:
Skipper/Helm: Ernesto Bertarelli (SUI) / Tactician: Morgan Larson (USA) / Mainsail Trimmer: Pierre-Yves Jorand (SUI) / Headsail Trimmer: Nils Frei (SUI) / Bowman: Yves Detrey (SUI)
GAC Pindar (NZL)
Skipper/Helm: William Tiller (NZL) / Tactician: Brad Farrant (NZL) / Mainsail Trimmer: Stewart Dodson (NZL) / Headsail Trimmer: Harry Thurston (NZL) / Bowman: Shaun Mason (GBR)
Skipper/Helm: Jérome Clerc (SUI) / Tactician: Bryan Mettraux (SUI) / Mainsail Trimmer: Arnaud Psarofaghis (SUI) / Headsail Trimmer: Cédric Schmidt (SUI) / Bowman: Thierry Wasem (SUI)
Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT)
Skipper/Helm: Roman Hagara (AUT) / Tactician: Hans Peter Steinacher (AUT) / Mainsail Trimmer: Matthew Adams (GBR) / Headsail Trimmer: Pierre Le Clainche (FRA) / Bowman: Graeme Spence (AUS)
SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN)
Co-Skipper/Helm: Jes Gram-Hansen (DEN) / Co-Skipper/Tactician: Rasmus Køstner (DEN) / Mainsail trimmer: Peter Cumming (GBR) / Headsail Trimmer: Mikkel Røssberg (DEN) / Bowman: Nicolai Sehested (DEN)
Team Duqm Oman (OMA)
Skipper/Helm: Robert Greenhalgh (GBR) / Tactician: Bleddyn Mon (GBR) / Mainsail Trimmer: Will Howden (GBR) / Headsail Trimmer: Andrew Walsh (GBR) / Bowman: Nasser Al Mashari (OMA)
Team Korea (KOR)
Skipper/Helm: Peter Burling (NLZ) / Tactician: Blair Tuke (NZL) / Mainsail Trimmer: Mark Bulkeley (GBR) / Headsail Trimmer: Sungwok Kim (KOR) / Bowman: Matt Cornwell (GBR)
The Wave, Muscat (OMA)
Skipper/Helm: Leigh McMillan (GBR) / Tactician: Ed Smyth (NZL) / Mainsail Trimmer: Pete Greenhalgh (GBR) / Headsail Trimmer: Musab Al Hadi (OMA) / Bowman: Hashim Al Rashdi (OMA)
Extreme Sailing Series