Please select your home edition
Edition
Protector 728x90

Gearing up in Portugal for PGOR start

by Brian Hancock on 26 Sep 2008
Portimao Global Ocean Race http://www.portimaoglobaloceanrace.com
Portimão Global Ocean Race. It’s often a question of being careful what you wish for. Two short years ago the idea of a new around-the-world yacht race was just that - an idea.

Josh Hall and myself were convinced that the sailing calendar needed an affordable, achievable global sailing race to fill in where other established events, the Volvo, Velux and Vendée, had moved on from. With rising budgets and the boats becoming technically complicated to sail, the new generation of short-handed sailors were finding it hard to find a home. The demand was there and we took the idea and ran with it.

The city of Portimão, Portugal may seem like an unlikely sponsor for the race but Portimão is an event city. They host the Audi Med Cup, the F1 Powerboating Grand Prix, and this weekend, the P1 Powerboat World Championships, among many other events. Their goal is to establish themselves as ‘the’ European city for world class events and a global yacht race certainly fits in among the sporting and cultural happenings that are steadily putting Portimão on the world map.

For us as event organizers we are all about our competitors, getting them to the start line and getting them around the world to the finish line: safely. We had opportunities to start the race in both the US and UK but chose Portugal for it’s temperate October climate and the fact that two hours into the race the fleet will be in the trade winds with a warm wind at their backs and the horizon ahead curved like outstretched arms just waiting for them.

We have an eclectic fleet for the inaugural event, small to be sure, but of the highest quality and the numbers on a par with the Velux and Volvo. We aspire to a fleet the size of the Vendée Globe but it has taken almost three decades for them to get to that level. There is deep interest in our race but with the economy in free fall and the fact that we are a brand new event, there is a certain and understandable reticence among some sailors, the French in particular, to throw their hand in with us. They will be there for race two, I am sure of it.

A new chapter begins this weekend. This is the last update going out from our current website. Our brand new website comes online early next week with all the tracking, news and video links any armchair race junkie could want. More competitors will start to arrive here in Portimão and prepare for their adventure of a lifetime. We have no seasoned veterans in this race. Just an inspirational group who have put their lives on hold to take up the challenge of the Portimão Global Ocean Race.

We hope you will follow along as we take a quick spin of the planet. This is no longer about Josh and myself. It’s all about the competitors, the trials and tribulations they are sure to encounter, and the metamorphosis they will undergo in their journey from aspiring amateurs to accomplished circumnavigators. It is fitting that Portugal, the country that sent so many intrepid explorers out into the blue yonder in search of new lands, plays host to this event.
Ancasta Ker 33 660x82Wildwind 2016 660x82Mackay Boats

Related Articles

America's Cup - Japanese launch new Challenger in Bermuda
A historic day today at the Dockyards in Bermuda as SoftBank Team Japan unveiled their brand new AC50 A historic day today at the Dockyards in Bermuda as SoftBank Team Japan unveiled their brand new America’s Cup Class race boat, Hikari, the next-generation boat designed to win the first ever America’s Cup for a Japanese flagged challenger. Hikari, meaning “flash of light”, was selected from over 430 names submitted by fans in Japan through a nationwide contest held by SoftBank Corp. in the le
Posted today at 2:11 am
Cool drone footage of Dongfeng Race Team on the water
Dongfeng is back in the water and training is well underway for the returning Chinese campaign. Dongfeng is back in the water and training is well underway for the returning Chinese campaign. Stunning drone footage of the re-fitted Volvo Ocean 65 has been released as the team hit the water off the coast of Lisbon.
Posted on 25 Feb
America's Cup - Oracle Team USA loses crew overboard - Video
OTUSA video of crew member Graeme Spence when he fell off the front cross beam of the team's new AC50 Oracle Team USA came close to having a serious injury to crew member Graeme Spence when he fell off the front cross beam of the team's new AC50 - a situation that has been feared as he passed between the foils, while the new America's Cup Defender was sailing at speed.
Posted on 23 Feb
Volvo Ocean Race - 10 young sailors who made an impact on race history
Age is just a number, right? Well, yes – according to some of the sailors who've tackled the world's toughest ocean test Age is just a number, right? Well, yes – according to some of the sailors who've tackled the world's toughest ocean test. They say 'if you're good enough, you're old enough', and this lot certainly proved that. Here, we look back at some of the most iconic young sailors in the Volvo Ocean Race and its predecessor, the Whitbread Round the World Race's four-and-a-half decade history.
Posted on 23 Feb
America's Cup - Artemis Racing launches their AC50 in Bermuda
Artemis Racing's new race yacht, “Magic Blue”, was christened today by Torbjörn Törnqvist's wife, Natalia, at a special Artemis Racing's new race yacht, “Magic Blue”, was christened today by Torbjörn Törnqvist's wife, Natalia, at a special celebration in Bermuda. The launch sees the culmination of more than three years of intense design and development work, which began almost immediately after the finish of the 34th America’s Cup in San Francisco.
Posted on 22 Feb
Volvo Ocean Race – Pablo Arrarte joins MAPFRE as watch captain
With just 242 days to go until the start of the 2017-18 edition on October 22, preparations are already well underway. Arrarte, who raced onboard Brunel in 2014-15, will also assume the role of deputy to Olympic gold medallist Xabi Fernández, who was named as skipper on Friday.
Posted on 22 Feb
Gladwell's Line - AC50 Roll Call shows several late or absent
The AC50 unveiling/launch/sailing call-sheet has had a few additions since Land Rover BAR were the first to launch The AC50 unveiling/launch/sailing call-sheet has had a few additions since Land Rover BAR were the first to launch on February 6 - the earliest day permitted under the 28-day voluntary Blackout amendment to the Protocol governing the current event.
Posted on 21 Feb
Emirates Team NZ and Southern Spars launching into the America’s Cup
Built by Southern Spars, Emirates Team New Zealand’s newest America’s Cup yacht has been launched. Built by Southern Spars, Emirates Team New Zealand’s newest America’s Cup yacht has been launched. The Auckland-based mast builder demonstrated its standing as one of the world’s top carbon fibre manufacturers. Southern delivered Emirates Team NZ’s most technically advanced yacht ever, meeting the extremely strict budget, construction, weight and timing requirements.
Posted on 20 Feb
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ's bike team in training - Video
Emirates Team New Zealand have released a short video of four of their grinding team in training Emirates Team New Zealand have released a short video of four of their grinding team in training - including two Olympic class sailors and an Olympic Gold medalist rower.
Posted on 20 Feb
America's Cup - Oracle Team USA sails AC50 for first time in Bermuda
Oracle Team USA took to the Great Sound on Monday, sailing its newly launched America's Cup Class boat, '17' Oracle Team USA took to the Great Sound on Monday, sailing its newly launched America's Cup Class boat, '17', for the first time. 'We had a successful day,' said skipper Jimmy Spithill dockside after the training session. 'First impressions were great. The boat went really well, so everyone is happy.'
Posted on 20 Feb