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52 Super Series: 2020 Vision

by 52 Super Series 11 May 2018 07:05 PDT
52 Super Series © Nico Martinez / MartinezStudio

11th Hour Racing and the 52 Super Series extend partnership agreement for a further three years, 2018-2020.

There is no doubt that 2018 is shaping up to be the most exciting season yet for the 52 Super Series. A clutch of new build boats are being launched and worked up now. There are new high calibre teams joining the world's leading grand prix circuit for their first time. And the circuit is pushing into new territories visiting two stunning new locations.

The racing action on the water will be edge of the seat stuff, tense, nail-biting, fast and always exciting. But just as the circuit is taking big steps forwards in terms of participation, so too the drive to maximise the positive impact that the 52 Super Series is making with its unequivocal, consistent sustainability messages underpinning everything the circuit does. That the 52 Super Series is the leading monohull grand prix circuit is proven year in year out by the action on the water, but working hand in hand with long time sustainability partners 11th Hour Racing, the 52 Super Series strives to be the most sustainable sailing circuit in the world.

To this end, the 52 Super Series and 11th Hour Racing have signed a new agreement, which will extend their cooperation and support for a further three years, from 2018 to 2020.

Commenting on the renewed partnership is Jeremy Pochman, 11th Hour Racing Co-founder and Strategic Director: "We are thrilled to continue our partnership with the 52 Super Series. This successful international circuit brings awareness to the issues affecting our ocean and showcase how major sailing events can minimise their environmental footprint by adopting sustainable operations. The list of successes and milestones has been steadily growing since 2015, targeting all three pillars of sustainability – social, economical and environmental – through new initiatives, active engagement with teams, venues and organisers, as well as robust reporting and certification processes and ongoing refinement across all operations. We look forward to another successful and productive season."

The 2018 season will be the fourth year the 52 Super Series has enjoyed a formidable partnership with 11th Hour Racing. Since 2015, year on year there have been notable positive innovations achieved within the regatta set up, not just reducing the environmental impact of the events but now actually ensuring the location is often in better, cleaner shape than when the circuit first arrived. And the entire leisure marine community connected with the town or venue is positively influenced.

On a wider scale, the 52 Super Series is now established as a global influencer. Every media output, whether the award winning video features or highlight reports, social media channels or daily press releases, carry pragmatic themes of sustainability.

The three primary objectives, that underpin each event, are to maximise the positive impact of the circuit, locally, nationally and globally, to minimise the environmental impact and to leave a lasting legacy.

Successful initiatives visible at every event include:

The 52 Super Series water filtration system, which in conjunction with teams' and organisers' aluminium personal bottles have removed the potential use of 30,000 half-litre plastic bottles per season.

Beach clean-ups have removed nearly half a tonne of debris and rubbish from beaches and coasts, and there are beach clean ups at each regatta.

The momentum has moved from being driven by the circuit organisers to the teams themselves now with 12 Sustainability Ambassadors meeting at every regatta.

Social media messages dedicated exclusively to sustainability reached over 300,000 individuals in 2017.

Plastic packaging has been removed from more than 2000 picnic meals over the last 3 seasons and local caterers using locally sourced produce is a pre-requisite of hosting a regatta.

More than 150 school age children have visited 2017 regattas, participated in clean-ups, met the circuit's stars and boats, and left as impassioned sustainability and environmental advocates.

All of the teams have now signed up to the circuit's environmental charter, which was drawn up for 2017.

Lars Böcking, 52 Super Series Chief Sustainability Officer, says: "We have achieved a good level of success so far, but the drive for 2018 is really to lead by example. We see and hear dozens of sailing events and teams preaching the same message, which is great, but our objective is to have grass roots sailors, Olympic sailors, round the world sailors, identifying with our approach and for the 52 Super Series, in partnership with 11th Hour Racing, to be setting the benchmarks, which will change the way people think. Yes, the awareness is growing, but I think we can show pragmatic steps and initiatives that can be applied by sailing clubs and events all around the world. Together we can make the difference we need to."

Among the key initiatives to be pursued in 2018 are:

  • The wider use of shuttle services at venues where required, collaborating and consolidating to ensure journeys are minimised.
  • Extend the availability and use of recycling bins.
  • Reduce and monitor the reduction of fuel use on the water.
  • Reuse branding from regatta to regatta. Use and positively promote eco-friendly products, particularly cleaners and packaging of all types.
  • Regular beach clean-ups.
  • Continue to promote sustainability messages a multitude of ways.
  • Provide site sustainability guides and requirements for each venue prior to teams' arrival.
  • Develop and motivate key influencers among high calibre, globally known sailors.
Agustin Zulueta, CEO of the 52 Super Series concludes: "Our purpose it to develop and sustain the racing circuit at the highest level and at the same time to harness the passion of our sailors for clean seas and a long term sustainable environment to ensure we inspire and excite people all around the world to think and act."

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