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Growing number of cities express interest in hosting The Ocean Race Europe 2025

by The Ocean Race 2 Aug 08:17 PDT
The Ocean Race 2022-23 - 13 June 2023. IMOCA In-Port Race in The Hague, Netherlands © Sailing Energy / The Ocean Race

Iconic cities across the European continent are expressing their interest in hosting the IMOCA fleet along The Ocean Race Europe route in 2025.

The Ocean Race Europe is a north-south European offshore race scheduled to take place in 2025, ahead of the 2026/27 edition of the round-the-world Race. It will start in the Baltic Sea, sail across the North Sea and the Atlantic, through the Strait of Gibraltar, and finish in the Mediterranean, with up to five stops along the way (in addition to the start and finish ports).

Following The Ocean Race's announcement in May of the next major event in the 10 year planning cycle, European coastal cities from countries north, south, east and west are submitting their proposals to be a stopover Host City for this world-class event.

Connecting Europe

Under the banner of "Connecting Europe: Racing to restore our ocean and waters" inspired by the EU Mission aimed at protecting and restoring the health of our ocean and waters through research and innovation, citizen engagement and blue investments, the event is scheduled to begin in the late summer of 2025.

The IMOCA class - featuring the most advanced foiling offshore race boats - will compete in The Ocean Race Europe, crewed by the best men and women in the sport racing alongside each other on each boat.

"The 14th edition of The Ocean Race has just come to a close and we are already looking forward to seeing the IMOCA fleet back in the water," said Richard Brisius, the Race Chairman of The Ocean Race. "Following the success of the first event in 2021, The Ocean Race Europe will connect the continent bringing world-class sailing and Racing with Purpose to help protect and restore the ocean."

Stopovers will welcome the fleet on a Thursday or Friday and visitors and partners will enjoy departures on Sunday. Start and finish ports will offer a longer event period. Bringing the core pillars of the Race's sustainability programme, each of the stopover cities will host an Ocean Live Park, the dedicated Race village where visitors can experience the event up-close and learn about how to protect the ocean. Activities will include learning workshops for children, high-level Summits and opportunities to help people understand the Race's on-board science programme.

Proposals arriving from cities all over Europe are being carefully evaluated by The Ocean Race and a maximum of 5 will be selected among the bidding venues. The selected cities will be announced in February 2024.

Becoming a stopover Host City, a unique opportunity

Sports events offer host cities a unique opportunity to tell their story, and shape perception for years to come. Cities bidding to become a stopover Host City are appealed by the significant benefits of partnering with The Ocean Race, which include considerable economic impact, major media exposure, an opportunity for citizen engagement as well as positioning the city and the wider region on the global stage.

"The Ocean Race has been recognised as the premier offshore sailing event in the world and is an equally compelling onshore spectacle," said Mirko Groeschner, Director of Marketing and New Business for The Ocean Race. "The Ocean Race Europe, featuring the IMOCA class, adds a high-performance technology aspect to the race, with each team pushing the envelope of design, innovation and engineering."

Designed to showcase professional fully-crewed offshore racing, this European multi-stage race is also an opportunity for the host city to contribute to the ocean health agenda, create a positive impact via The Ocean Race Racing with Purpose programme, drive positive change and inclusion locally and globally, and leave a legacy for the next generation. In addition, it provides the opportunity to develop a commercial programme and get local stakeholders on board, which will contribute financially to the city and support the local positive impact.

The Ocean Race has adopted a ten-year strategy that includes the next two editions of The Ocean Race, in 2026/27 and 2030/31, and two editions of The Ocean Race Europe, in 2025 and 2029. This long term strategy provides a strong platform for host cities, commercial sponsors and partners for improved ocean health.

A list of technical requirements to host The Ocean Race Europe is available and the selection of successful cities will be based on their fulfilment as well as the overall vision and concept for the event.

Interested cities can contact for more information.

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