IMS in Norway
The Sony Ericsson NORC ranking 2005 starts where it all ended last year - in the picturesque town of Aasgaardstrand south of Oslo this weekend.
The interest for IMS racing is growing fast here in Norway and Scandinavia, where participants have almost doubled from last year’s event. That is great new for both sailors and the race's partners, says Lars Erik Heibek, leader in Norwegian Offshore Racing Club (NORC).
Over 20 boats will be on the starting line on Saturday for intensive round the cans racing. HMK Haralds Fram-team is a clear favourite after last year’s strong performance. But this time around they will be sailing Fram XV instead of the 40 footer Fram XIV.
"Our ambition is to repeat last year’s performance and our second goal is to avoid having Fram XIV in front of us on the score board. We are very curious to se how the Grand Soleil 42R will perform on the race course here in Norway," says Kjell Arne Myrann on the Fram-team.
The Sony Ericsson NORC ranking consists of three round the cans events and three offshore races. The highlight of the season will be the national class championship in Hankø in September where Norway's best IMS team will be honoured. Over 30 boats will be using the summer to fine tune their boats and crew to participate in this three day championship.
Due to the rising interest in IMS sailing, Sony Ericsson has stepped up as main partner for the regatta series and will use it as a showcase for their products. The leading mobile technology company is investing a lot in sailing in Norway these days.
"With Sony Ericsson aboard we are able to take the event to the next level, and give the sailors even more fun on the water and ashore. Every penny from our partners will be used to develop the ranking," says Heibek.