Please select your home edition
Doyle Sails 2020 - Built for Adventure 728x90 TOP

Charlie Enright looks ahead to The Ocean Race Europe

by The Ocean Race 27 Mar 2021 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

The Ocean Race to be climate positive sport event
Aiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions by up to 75% for the 2022-23 Race The Ocean Race aims to slash its emissions by up to 75%. All participants in the next edition of the round-the-world sailing race are working together to make the event climate positive. Posted on 9 Aug
How deep is your love?
Vital to making sailing a life-long pastime Some will know this as a Bee Gees or Take That song, and those of a younger generation will know it as a Calvin Harris track; either way, it is vital to making sailing a life-long pastime. Posted on 11 Jul
Mirpuri Foundation Sailing Trophy 2022 concludes
Green Eyes clinches line honours in the NHC class The 107-foot superyacht Green Eyes and the professional sailing team on board the VO65 Racing for the Planet walked away with line honours after two days and closely fought racing in the bay of Cascais. Posted on 11 Jul
The Ocean Race announces a Positive Change Partner
The partnership announced today will see DSC aligned with The Ocean Race Dole Sunshine Company (DSC) and The Ocean Race will team up to promote The Dole Promise and support the DSC's sustainability journey towards zero fossil-based packaging by 2025 and net zero carbon emissions by 2030. Posted on 7 Jul
Mirpuri Foundation Sailing Trophy 2022 preview
Exciting flotilla to line up for the highly anticipated event The regatta will see the third edition of the sustainable event get under way to cannon fire from onboard the Navio Patrulha Oceânico Sines of the Portuguese Navy at midday on Saturday July 9th. Posted on 6 Jul
Universal Declaration of Ocean Rights campaign
The Ocean Race is launching One Blue Voice, new initiative to drive public support for ocean rights The ambitious campaign aims to give the ocean a voice and put in place a global framework for protecting the marine environment, which plays a critical role in maintaining the health of the planet. Posted on 6 Jul
UN Ocean Conference
The Ocean Race calls for a Universal Declaration of Ocean Rights The Ocean Race and its global collaborators - including the Government of Cabo Verde - took a major step forward in their efforts to give the ocean a voice and make it an international legal entity. Posted on 1 Jul
Pelle Petterson receives Magnus Olsson Prize
Now the circle is complete, with the first Swede recognised The Swedish sailing icon and legend, Pelle Petterson, has been announced as winner of the prestigious Magnus "Mange" Olsson Prize 2022, which is awarded annually to an individual who has made an indelible contribution to the world of sailing. Posted on 10 Jun
Leading voices call for ocean rights
To protect Antarctica and the Southern Ocean The Ocean Race Summit Stockholm - Racing to protect the Southern Ocean, brought together sailors, scientists, policymakers and adventurers yesterday (Wednesday 1st June), to discuss the urgent need to protect Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Posted on 3 Jun
Ocean Race aims for equal number of men and women
The ambitious 2030 target is part of a new collaboration called Horizon The ambitious target is part of Horizon, a new collaboration with The Magenta Project, World Sailing Trust and PA Consulting, dedicated to increasing the number of women in professional sailing. Posted on 26 May
SOUTHERN-SPARS-MISSY-FURLING-BOOMS-728-X-90 BottomArmstrong-A-Wing-728x90 gif BOTTOMC-Tech 2021 SnuffAir 728x90 BOTTOM