Extreme Sailing Series Act 6 will get underway tomorrow. The Mediterranean is set to be the focus over the next couple of weeks in Trapani on the island of Sicily which will quickly be followed by Act 7 in Nice on the south coast of France.
At yesterday’s press conference in Nice, Christian Estrosi, Deputy Mayor of Nice and President of Nice Côte d’Azur welcomed the Extreme Sailing Series circuit to Nice for the first time: 'We are very happy to welcome an event of such importance with such a peculiar concept. Sailing so close to the public will allow to transform the Promenade des Anglais in a true natural stage and to offer a great show to those new in sailing and the fans.'
At the same time IMOCA 60 offshore racer, Jean-Pierre Dick, confirmed he will race an Extreme 40 team under the colours of his home town. Dick will race with Transat Jacques Vabre co-skipper, Jérémie Beyou who recently won the 2011 Solitaire du Figaro for the second time, and Billy Besson and Arnaud Jarlegant.
There has also been a significant change to Emirates Team NZ, with Olympic Gold medalist and World Champion rower, Rob Waddell joining the crew. The massively built, and incredibly fit, Waddell has been a regular with Emirates Team NZ as a grinder and this will be his first racing series in a catamaran event.
Also named in the line-up for Trapani is triple Olympic Gold medalist, Ben Ainslie (GBR) who is another getting his first taste of catamaran racing at the Extreme level. Ainslie was previously announced as being the helm of Oman Air, and will be sailing for the next three events or Acts in the Extreme Sailing Series.
Christian Estrosi, Deputy Mayor of Nice and President of Nice Côte d’Azur welcomed the ESS circuit to Nice for the first time at a press conference - Extreme Sailing Series Act 6 2011 -
However, all eyes for now are on Trapani as the teams prepare their 40-foot racing machines in temperatures over 30 degrees! The latest forecast from official weather providers to the Extreme Sailing Series, WetterWelt, reveal a frustratingly light and variable few days ahead. At this morning’s press conference, Girolano Turano, President of Province of Trapani, welcomed all teams to Trapani and said: 'Trapani continues with its international promotion through significant events such as the Extreme Sailing Series, one of the top international sailing circuits. We hope that all visitors and tourists enjoy the competition in the next few days'.
The crew lists for the Trapani event have been published today whilst Artemis Racing skipper Terry Hutchinson has confirmed the team will not be racing at the event due to the pressures of the build of their AC72 and the America’s Cup World Series. The team had fully intended to compete in Trapani and it was a difficult decision for Hutchinson to make at the 11th hour - Artemis Racing’s container was already unloaded on the dockside in Trapani and the team’s logistics in place – but, ultimately, a practical one: 'We will, of course, be back for all the remaining events this year, and eager to climb back up the leaderboard.' Act 6, Trapani, Crew Lists (12.9.11):
Alinghi: Skipper/Tactician: Tanguy Cariou (FRA) / Helm: Yann Guichard (FRA) / Trimmer: Nils Frei (SUI) / Bowman: Yves Detrey (SUI)
Emirates Team New Zealand: Skipper/Helm: Adam Beashel (AUS) / Tactician: Jeremy Lomas (NZL) / Trimmer: Richard Meacham (NZL) / Bowman: Rob Waddell (NZL)
Groupe Edmond de Rothschild: Skipper/Helm: Pierre Pennec (FRA) / Traveler: Christophe Espagnon (FRA) / Trimmer: Thierry Fouchier (FRA) / Bowman: Hervé Cunningham (FRA)
Luna Rossa: Skipper/Tactician: Max Sirena (ITA) / Helm: Paul Campbell-James (GBR) / Trimmer: Alister Richardson (GBR) / Bowman: Manuel Modena (ITA)
Niceforyou: Skipper/Helm: Alberto Barovier (ITA) / Tactician: Stefano Rizzi (ITA) / Trimmer: Lorenzo Mazza (ITA) / Bowman: Simone de Mari (ITA)
Oman Air: Skipper/Helm: Ben Ainslie (GBR) / Tactician: Kinley Fowler (NZL) / Trimmer: David Carr (GBR) / Bowman: Nasser Al Mashari (OMA)
Red Bull Extreme Sailing: Skipper/Helm: Roman Hagara (AUT) / Tactician: Hans Peter Steinacher (AUT) Trimmer: Matt Adams (GBR) / Bowman: Craig Monk (NZL)
Team Extreme, ‘Sailing Seacily’: Skipper/Tactician: Sebbe Godefroid / Helm: Patrick Demesmaeker (BEL) / (BEL) / Trimmer: Jan Coppens (BEL) / Bowman: Vince Thery (BEL)
Team GAC Pindar: Skipper/Helm: Ian Williams (GBR) / Tactician: Pierluigi De Felice (ITA) / Trimmer: Andrew Walsh (GBR) / Bowman: Ed Smyth (NZL)
The Wave, Muscat: Skipper/Helm: Leigh McMillan (GBR) / Tactician: Kyle Langford (AUS) / Trimmer: Nick Hutton (GBR) / Bowman: Khamis Al Anbouri (OMA)
Extreme Sailing Series website