Please select your home edition
Barton Marine 2019 728x90

The Ocean Race: Witt and Scallywag looking at IMOCA60

by Nazvi Careem/South China Morning Post 16 Jul 20:36 PDT 17 July 2019
Scallywag nears the finish of the 2019 Transatlantic Race off Cowes © SHK Scallywag

One week after celebrating one of his biggest international successes, Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag skipper David Witt said he was keen to take on another round-the-world Ocean Race and win it, according to a report in the South China Morning Post.

Witt, at the helm of a 100-foot super maxi version of Scallywag, took line honours in the prestigious Transatlantic 2019 earlier in July, beating out 12 other boats who made the 2,960 nautical mile passage from Newport, in the United States, to Cowes, England.

The Hong Kong-based Australian – who is also planning an assault on this year’s Sydney to Hobart race – said talks were under way about a potential Scallywag boat to make the start line in Alicante, Spain, for the 2021-22 multi-stage The Ocean Race. He stressed he would only take on the challenge with proper preparation.

“It’s something we are seriously looking into at the moment,” Witt said. “It’s on the radar for sure. We just want to make sure that if we do The Ocean Race again, we are going to do it with enough preparation and proper budget so that we have a chance to win the race rather than just compete.”

Scallywag was a relatively late entry to the 2017-18 edition of the then Volvo Ocean Race, its participation having only been announced five months before the boats set sail from Alicante in late October, 2017.

Despite lack of preparation, Witt and his crew steered Scallywag to a dramatic victory in leg four from Melbourne to its home port of Hong Kong and a second place from Hong Kong to Auckland.

Still, Witt maintains that their performances in the Hong Kong and Auckland legs proved they were capable of competing against and beating the best crews in the world.

“We were only beaten by a minute and 40 seconds, or something like that, to Auckland, and that was one of my proudest moments, as proud as when we won in Hong Kong,” said Witt. “We had very limited preparation and were running third overall when we reached Auckland, which was halfway around the world in the competition. It gave us some insight that if we had enough training and practice and have the right people in place we would be capable of finishing at the right end of the fleet.”

Witt, however, said he would only in interested in sailing the new IMOCA 60 boats.

“I don’t want to do it again on those 65 boats,” said Witt. “I’ve been pretty vocal about it. If we are going to do it, it would be on the IMOCA 60.

“In my opinion, we need a designer engaged by the end of the year. That is the timeline we are looking at,” said Witt.

For the full story click here

Related Articles

Carolijn Brouwer awarded Magnus Olsson Prize
One of the first females ever to win The Ocean Race The Mange Olsson Memorial Foundation has revealed that Carolijn Brouwer - one of the first females ever to win The Ocean Race in the 2017-18 edition - has scooped its prestigious award for 2019. Posted on 8 Aug
The Ocean Race: Signed, Sailed and Delivered
Liz Wardley and other Race veterans are back on a VO65 – but this time, there's no trophy It's 3am in Newcastle, England – and, although this might feel a million miles away from The Ocean Race, if you can open your sleepy eyes enough you might just spot a familiar face or two. Posted on 2 Aug
Martine flies the flag
Brazil's The Ocean Race star leads the charge in style at the PanAm Games in Peru Martine Grael, Olympic champion and star of The Ocean Race, led the Brazilian charge at the PanAm Games in Peru and made history at the same time - by flying the flag, with her sailing crew Kahena Kunze. Posted on 1 Aug
Caffari: I'd love to lead a team in 2021
Turn the Tide on Plastic skipper yearning for a return Turn the Tide on Plastic skipper Dee admits she's yearning for a return in the next edition, as she launches strategic review into women in sailing. Posted on 13 Jul
Paul Meilhat confirms registration for dream race
Top-ranked IMOCA sailor focuses in on The Ocean Race Paul Meilhat, the French winner of the last Route du Rhum race, has confirmed his registration for The Ocean Race 2021-22. Posted on 11 Jul
Offshore Team Germany sets course for 2021 start
IMOCA 60 campaign was announced during Kiel Week Last month in Kiel, Germany, a new IMOCA 60 team emerged with ambitions for the start of The Ocean Race in 2021. Posted on 11 Jul
IMOCA 60 vs VO65
Everything you need to know about the two classes in 2021-22 In case you missed it, the next edition of The Ocean Race will be contested by two different classes of boat: the all-new, super fast and foiling IMOCA 60s, and the one-design VO65s that gave us such intensely close racing last time out. Posted on 6 Jul
Ocean Race science equipment on new mission
Devices that collect valuable information on ocean health Devices that collect valuable information on ocean health are being used to further understanding of the state of our seas. Posted on 5 Jul
The Ocean Race: New VO65 campaign announced
Mirpuri Foundation ‘Racing For The Planet' to put Climate Change on the global agenda The Mirpuri Foundation has announced that it will soon be ‘Racing For The Planet', as it confirms both its environmental message and the name of its new VO65 racing yacht for the next edition of The Ocean Race, beginning in 2021. Posted on 3 Jul
We speak to North Sails' Quinny Houry in Palma
At the epicentre for all superyacht matters in Europe We spoke to Quinny Houry of North Sails in Palma, the epicentre for all superyacht matters in Europe. Posted on 19 Jun
Naiad 660x82px_TouristAOWBS 2019 BottomWindBot-COACH-660x82