Jochen Wolfram (GER), Jeremy Elliott (IRE), Andy Meiklejohn (NZL) and Nick Bubb (UK) have taken their places onboard Kosatka, Team Russia's VO70 competing in the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09.
Left to right: Jochen Wolfram, Jeremy Elliott, Andy Meiklejohn and Nick Bubb aboard Kosatka, Team Russia
This will be 33 year-old Kiwi, Andy Meiklejohn's third Volvo Ocean Race. He was a rigger on News Corp in the 2001-02 race and bowman on Brasil 1 in 2005-06 edition. Andy will act as bowman again for Team Russia and will train Team Principal Oleg Zherebtsov as second bowman for the Race.
In addition to the Volvo, Andy was bowman on Victory Challenge in last years' America's Cup and was onboard Rosebud, winner of the 2007 Sydney Hobart Race.
Jeremy Elliott (29) from North Sails UK's loft joins the Team as trimmer and sail designer. Irish born Jeremy was on the sailing and design team for GBR Challenge America's Cup teams in 2002 and 2004 and was on the sail design team for Luna Rossa in 2007. Jeremy has been fundamental in designing Kosatka's sails; his role is seen as a key factor on the boat.
German Olympic sailor Jochen Wolfram (41) joins Team Russia as grinder and trimmer. Although this is Jochen's first Volvo, he sailed for United Team Germany in the America's Cup in 2007.
Jochen is an accomplished maxi boat sailor and in addition to his role as grinder, he will also oversee and manage the deck equipment onboard.
Finally, 29-year-old Nick Bubb joins Team Russia as pitman and boat captain. He will be responsible for liaising between the boat and shore team and will look after below deck systems including hydraulics and engines.
Nick has a degree in Mechanical Engineering and has extensive short-handed racing experience including four years of Mini Transat racing. He took part in the Oryx Quest (non stop around the world) on Maxi Cat Daedalus (ex ENZA) as well as sailing in Class 40's for La Route du Rhum and Transat Jacques Vabre. Most recently he worked with Mike Golding on the Open 60 Ecover.
In an exciting line up that unites experienced Volvo Ocean Race veterans with America's Cup and Olympic sailors, Team Russia's crew now comprises:
AUT - Andreas Hanakamp (skipper)
ESP - Guillermo Altadill (watch leader)
DEN - Stig Westergaard (watch leader and performance manager)
UKR - Rodion Luka (Helmsman)
NED - Wouter Verbraak (Navigator)
RUS - Oleg Zherebtsov (Bow 2 and Pit)
NZL - Andy Meiklejohn (Bow)
IRE - Jeremy Elliott (Trimmer and sail designer)
GER - Jochen Wolfram (Grinder and trimmer).
UK - Nick Bubb (Pitman)
Team Russia's CEO Micheal Woods comments; 'I am delighted to announce Andy, Jeremy Jochen and Nick's involvement with Team Russia. We have assembled a great team of people here with enormous experience and a true sense of adventure.'
Team Russia is now in qualifying mode for Volvo Ocean Race which starts in Alicante in October 2008.