Please select your home edition
Edition
Highfield Boats - SW - LEADERBOARD

Charlie Enright looks ahead to The Ocean Race Europe

by The Ocean Race 27 Mar 23:44 PDT
After a winter of remote working 11th Hour Racing Team returns to the Bay of Biscay in . © Amory Ross

The skipper of 11th Hour Racing Team says the inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe requires a focus on tactics, teamwork and boatspeed...

As he settles back into training with his team in Europe, we caught up with Charlie Enright, the skipper of 11th Hour Racing Team, to get his thoughts as the team looks ahead to The Ocean Race Europe in May/June.

Charlie, it's great to see the team getting back out on the water now with a full programme of training and racing planned for this season. It all kicks off with The Ocean Race Europe, the first opportunity to race in a fully crewed configuration in the IMOCA. Why is this race important to your team?

The Ocean Race Europe will be a great opportunity to line up with the other IMOCA 60s and for the first time fully crewed. Even though it looks like we'll have one of the only older generation boats, the plan is to have new foils and we are eager to see how they perform.

You've done a few transatlantic deliveries in fully crewed mode over the past two years - what have you learned on those passages that you can apply ahead of racing?

Transatlantics are a lot different to coastal races, so I'm not sure how much of our learning over the past 18 months or so will apply! The boat is well equipped for more people living offshore but there's not much 'living' to be had on these shorter, sprint legs. We've been practising our boat handling and sail changes but ultimately it's still all about speed through the water, and making the right tactical decisions.

What do you see as the biggest challenge for teams and sailors who spend more time in short-handed mode as they set up with a larger crew?

Honestly, in a race like this, with shorter legs, there shouldn't be a lot of challenges. Those more used to short-handed racing just need to accept the help of more hands to do the heavy-lifting!

The Ocean Race Europe consists of three short legs, a few days at the most... how do these sprints compare to the marathon pace of the around the world race?

These sprints are very different from the typical Ocean Race legs that last 20 or more days, or the non-stop laps of the planet that take 70 plus days. In a lot of ways these shorter legs are more difficult because you're always on, and rarely get into any kind of watch system.

Tactical decisions can become more important because you don't get a lot of time to catch-up if you get them wrong, but as always...speed can make you look pretty smart!

How does The Ocean Race Europe fit into the team's overall programme as you prepare for the around the world edition of The Ocean Race in 2022-23?

The Ocean Race Europe is a great opportunity to introduce IMOCA teams to the concept of crewed racing. It will be great to see the boats pushed to their fullest potential, with extra hands, over the course of entire legs. Given the race course, we should see a lot of different conditions which will help our overall development a lot, particularly around our sail program. We are all really looking forward to getting back out there and racing again.

Any other thoughts as you look ahead to the race?

France is unique in that they've been able to sail short-handed through most of the pandemic. For most of us, it will just be great to just get racing again!

Related Articles

Mirpuri Foundation Sailing Trophy set for June
Full Ocean Race Europe fleet to headline the event Portuguese sailing and ocean racing fans will be part of an incredible event this June when a fleet of foiling IMOCA 60s and one-design VO65s take to the coast of Portugal as part of the second annual Mirpuri Foundation Sailing Trophy. Posted on 11 Mar
Portugal to host The Ocean Race Europe in June
Cascais, the home of the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team, will host a stopover Following the Race start from Lorient, France, at the end of May, the inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe will stop in Cascais, bringing the top international offshore racing teams in the world to Portugal. Posted on 3 Mar
Lorient to host The Ocean Race Europe start
Iconic port, in the heart of the renowned 'Bretagne Sailing Valley' The iconic port, in the heart of the renowned 'Bretagne Sailing Valley', will host the start for both the IMOCA and VO65 fleets as they charge south across the Bay of Biscay. Posted on 2 Mar
All-star crew for Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team
Yoann Richomme annoucnes team for The Ocean Race Europe Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team skipper Yoann Richomme has confirmed an all-star crew of eight sailors for this summer's inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe. Posted on 11 Feb
CORUM L'Épargne set for The Ocean Race Europe
French IMOCA team will join inaugural edition of new event The CORUM L'Épargne Sailing Team, led by skipper Nicolas Troussel, has confirmed it will take part in the inaugural edition of The Ocean Race Europe this spring, with its new generation IMOCA. Posted on 11 Feb
Emily Nagel on her evolution as a pro sailor
An interview with Emily Nagel on her evolution as a professional sailor Emily Nagel might be “just” 27 years old, but this hasn't stopped her from racking up an impressive inshore and offshore sailing resume, in addition to earning her credentials as a naval architect. Posted on 10 Feb
Entries open for The Ocean Race Europe
Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team becomes first to enter new event The Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team has become the first team to enter The Ocean Race Europe, following the opening of the entry period. Posted on 26 Jan
Four ways The Ocean Race is helping blue planet
In 2021 there needs to be urgent action to help the ocean The Ocean Race has seen firsthand the devastating impact of pollution, plastic, climate change and industrial overfishing on the ocean. Posted on 21 Jan
Top 10 Biggest Sailing Stories of 2020 part 1
Mark Jardine chats with Sailjuice's Andy Rice about the stories that you've read most! The countdown of the top articles from 2020 on Sail-World.com and YachtsandYachting.com. Mark Jardine chats with Sailjuice's Andy Rice about the stories that you've read most! Posted on 30 Dec 2020
Charlie Enright on RORC Time over Distance Series
The young skipper has already notched up two round the world races This week's special guest for the RORC Time Over Distance series is Charlie Enright. Born and bred in Rhode Island, USA, the young skipper has already notched up two round the world races which have been nothing short of high drama. Posted on 23 Dec 2020
Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW FOOTERSavvy Navvy 2021 SW FOOTER v2Cyclops 2020 - SmartlinkNano - FOOTER