29 teams from 12 countries
The Raid pushes teams to the edge both mentally and physically as they relentlessly navigate round the 100,000 islands that make up the Swedish, Aland and Finnish Archipelagos with little chance for rest. The teams battle through uncharted rocks and changing weather conditions for five days stopping only for a brief ‘overnight’ sleep when the sun goes down in a region which sees very little night time in the high summer.
The latest entry to join the highly competitive fleet comes from British sailor Conrad Humphreys, with crew Ryan Crawford. They will represent Team BLUE™ alongside the other all-British boat that are also racing under the Team BLUE banner raising awareness of climate change and mans impact on the environment. Humphreys believes participating in this adventurous race through one of nature’s best-kept secrets, the Scandinavian Islands fits well with what they are trying to achieve with the BLUE project.
This year’s event has attracted sailors from 10 countries including teams from as far a field as Australia and New Zealand alongside local crews from Sweden and Finland. There are 17 teams returning to the event from previous editions but this year there will also be 12 teams, a record number, competing in this unique event for the first time. They have yet to experience the extreme challenges of racing for 5 days covering anywhere from 300-500 nautical miles across some of the most challenging and beautiful landscapes in the world.
All three podium finishers of the recently held F18 European Championships in Dervio will compete in this year's Archipelago Raid. With new F18 European Champion Micha Heemskerk and Bastiann Tentji ready to take on the competition. Dutchman Heemskerk will be back to win the race having been forced to retire in his first two attempts at the event.
Another very strong entry comes from Thibault Vauchel (FRA) who teams up with Mr Sea Cart Calle Hennix from Sweden. These two experienced competitors have both won the event before and on paper look like the team to beat. ‘Ironman’ Calle Hennix won the event in 2003 and Thibault in 2005.
Archipelago Raid Race Director Christine Salen is thrilled with the race line up. "It again proves that this event is becoming an important race on the agenda of the best sailors and adventurers worldwide. We are very proud to have 30 high quality teams from 12 countries and we believe it has the makings to be the best Raid ever. We are greatly looking forward to welcoming all the teams to the Archipelago and seeing how this unique area tests each of them to the absolute maximum."
The official start is at Björnö a pristine island not far from downtown Stockholm. It is one of Stockholm’s finest beaches in the Archipelago and makes Björnö one of the Archipelago Foundation’s most visited areas.
Teams competing in the race:
Team Blue Oceans Conrad Humphreys GBR / Ryan Crawford GBR
Team Blue Climate Matt Eeles GBR / Jamie Butterworth GBR
White Knuckle Express Fredrik Karlsson SWE / Magnus Groth SWE
GB Glace Bengt Nissar SWE / Jan Schiratzki SWE
Team proustsailing.com Eric Proust FRA / Romain Motteau FRA
Hobiecat Nisssan FIN Patrick Neuhaus FIN / Sampo Koskenohi FIN
Hobiecat Nissan FRA Jean Christophe Mourniac FRA / Frank Citeau FRA
Hobiecat Nissan SWE Kalle Kjerstadius SWE / Johan Tempelman SWE
Hobicat Nissean GER Arne Gosche GER / Michael Walther GER
Catella Racing Team Thomas Johanson FIN / Martin Gahmberg FIN
Team Ocean Yvan Bourgnon FRA / Olivier Gagliani BEL
Team BEP Marine Matthew Flynn NZL / Chris Middleweek NZL
KTH Carl Johan Söder SWE / Klas Rutberg SWE
Karlberg Media AB Petter Karlberg SWE / Eric Brunnberg SWE
RBSC Murphy Nye Patrick Demesmaeker BEL / Vincent Thery BEL
Voltaren Per Westergren SWE / Jonatan Singman SWE
Acando Håkan Fahlen SWE / Jonas Ahlden SWE
Sundvalls Bygg AB Fredrik Ekman SWE / Gustav Tempelman SWE
Westergren/Westergren Tomas Westergren SWE / Lars Westergren SWE
St Jude Medical Henrik Grape SWE / Johan Gnosspelius SWE
Yamaha Red Mischa Heemskerk NED / Bastiian Tentji NED
Yamaha Blue David Scully USA / Claire Bailey GBR
Yamaha Silver Billy Besson FRA / Matthieu Vandame FRA
Arc’Teryx Martin Hållsten SWE / Thomas Ekefalk SWE
Team Musto Australia Grant Pellew AUS / Andrew Macpherson AUS
Wippies Pete Karto FIN / Sam Öhman FIN
Brossard Thibault Vauchel FRA / Calle Hennix SWE
Team Thule Mathias Almstedt SWE / Martin Strandberg SWE
Class 40 Norway Rune Aasberg NOR / Tom Thoresen NOR