The crew of HUGO BOSS II, the British Volvo 60 racing yacht competing in this year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race today surprised the 300,000 spectator boats and thousands more Australian TV viewers at home when they started the iconic race in all-white Hugo Boss suits.
The 15 strong team of professional sailors, with special guest Nathan Buckley, former Australian rules football player began the race in style, looking dashing in white aboard their sexy black boat and the bright blue sunshine of Sydney Harbour.
After a slow start out of Sydney Harbour, Hugo Boss II has a race of her own on within the extensive handicap fleet, against two other Volvo 60 racing yachts, DHL–The Daily Telegraph and George Gregan Foundation. Hugo Boss II has a crew of 15, a diverse group of sailors from all over the world.
The core crew are joined by several professional sailors, guest Nathan Buckley, Knut Brokelmann from the boat’s fashion house sponsor Hugo Boss, Grant Pearce from GQ Magazine and two young sailors from the UK’s Volvo RYA Keelboat Programme. Alex Thomson Racing works with the programme to offer talented young sailors the opportunity to race aboard their high spec racing machines. Britons Nick Cherry and Rachel Howe, one of three young female sailors on the boat, have the honour of racing onboard.
Skipper Ross Daniel commented: 'We had a slow start out of Sydney Harbour today as expected, the choppy upwind conditions of the Harbour are not suited to Hugo Boss II, as she’s optimized for long distance sailing. Now that we’ve got going, with our reaching sails set, we’re off and in a great position for some close racing further down the track.'
Hugo Boss II, Alex Thomson Racing’s Volvo 60 was formerly Assa Abloy, who took line honours in the 2001 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. The boat is in Sydney at the end of her world tour, which has taken in visits to USA, Singapore and Hawaii. Hugo Boss and Alex Thomson Racing own Hugo Boss II in addition to round the world solo sailor Alex Thomson’s Open 60 racing yacht HUGO BOSS.
Alex is currently racing Hugo Boss in a double-handed round the world race, the Barcelona World Race. Having broken the 24 hour distance world record for sailing 500.01 miles in a 24 hour period two weeks ago, Alex and co-skipper Australian Andrew Cape are currently lying in second place, spending Christmas just off the coast of New Zealand.