Grant Spanhake


Former Whitbread competitor, currently Team Tyco's sailmaker gives his views on the Volvo Ocean Race
New Zealand-born Grant (Fuzz) Spanhake is a veteran of three Whitbread races, sailing with the now legendary Sir Peter Blake on Lion New Zealand in 1985-86, Grant Dalton in 1989-90 on Fisher & Paykel and finally in 1993-94 on the George Collins' Chessie Racing. Now in charge of sail design for Team Tyco, we caught up with him on a sunny morning earlier in the race. Q: Having sailed three ocean races, how does it feel now to travel between stopovers on a 747 in a matter of hours rather than having to take a beating at sea for weeks end? Grant 'Fuzz' Spanhake: I am quite happy being on the shore, especially being in sail design, as it holds a lot of interest for me. I felt that in ocean racing I had achieved all I wanted to achieve. I like developing boats, I like developing speed and, in sail design, you can do that. Out there, when you're sailing, you have what you have, you trim and you make the boat go as fast as you can. I'm not giving up ocean racing at all, it's just that I've done it. Q: Do you think that being married and having a child has had some effect? FS: Yes, definitely, I enjoy America's Cup sailing, IMS and Admiral's Cup racing - those kind of regattas are great because my family can come along. There is a responsibility. Before, when I was young and single, I'd climb all over the boat, go up the rig and, if something happens, you only have yourself to blame, you only have yourself to be responsible for, but now I'm married with a family and of course, in the back of my mind, I think about that, yes. Q: How have you adjusted to being shore crew. Do

VISITORS