Team Telefónica officially unveiled their crew for the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 during a ceremony in Madrid today.
Spain’s Iker Martínez will skipper Telefónica, which boasts three Olympic gold medallists, two America’s Cup winners and one Volvo Ocean Race winner. Team Telefónica’s technical chief Horacio Carabelli, a Volvo Ocean Race winner in 2008-2009, said the 11 sailors and dozens of shore crew were ready to take on the 39,000 nautical mile ocean challenge.
'It's a boat that's highly developed technologically and in terms of what we can put into it,' he said. 'Then there's our crew -- a fantastic bunch and we've been together for practically two years. It's a very tight knit group and that's vital for this competition, that still has nine months to run.'
The team includes navigator Andrew Cape, watch leader Neal McDonald, watch leader João Signorini, boat captain Pepe Ribes, trimmer Xabi Fernández, helmsman Jordi Calafat, helmsman Pablo Arrarte, bowman Zane Gills, bowman Antonio Cuervas-Mons and media crew member Diego Fructuoso.
The presentation was hosted by Telefónica’s head of public affairs Francisco de Bergia and was attended by the Valencia region president Alberto Fabra, Spanish Sports Council general director Matilde García and the team’s CEO Pedro Campos.
The team revelled in the celebrations before racing back to Alicante ahead of the opening of the Alicante Race Village on Friday evening from 1800 local time.
Volvo Ocean Race website