Five sign up for round the world race
The first entry to reserve a spot on the start line in September 2011 is South African yachtsman, Adrian Kuttel, who confirmed his intention to compete in the event during the Cape Town stop over of the 2008-09 Portimão Global Ocean Race. Kuttel has made multiple North Atlantic crossings with sailing experience in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. He also has extensive offshore racing experience and has competed in the Cape to Rio Race, the Cape to Salvador Race and set a course record in the Cape to St Helena Island Race as skipper of the British military team. He also set a new course record in the Cape to Bahia Race while crewing on board Mike Slade’s Supermaxi, ICAP Leopard. The 37 year-old yachtsman has an impressive sailing heritage with his father, Padda Kuttel, skippering Atlantic Privateer in the 1985-86 Whitbread Round the World Race.
The first French team to sign-up for the race is headed by offshore sailing legend and journalist, Patrice Carpentier: “I really want to go on the race with my four associates from Groupe 5 who are also very good friends,” he confirms. Carpentier and his team will take advantage of the ‘Team Entry’ option for the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race which permits a maximum of six crew for the circumnavigation with team members swapping at stop-overs.
Carpentier will celebrate his 60th birthday eight months before crossing the startline: “The funny story is that we will all be 60 years-old at the time of racing around the world,” he explains. Carpentier - who writes for the French yachting publication Course au Large and the international sailing magazine Seahorse –- is a well known figure in the world of short-handed, offshore racing and his sporting achievements include 3rd place in the 1973 Whitbread Round-The-World Race; 1st in the 1982 Route du Rhum; 2nd in the 1991 Mini Transat and 11th place in the 2000-01 Vendée Globe. It is certain that the French team will be a powerful force within the fleet. “We’re very motivated for a good performance,” adds Carpentier.
Returning for a second time to the event, veteran Dutch solo sailor, Nico Budel, has registered for the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race. During Leg 2 of the 2008-09 Portimão Global Ocean Race, Budel was forced to abandon his Open 40 Hayai when the yacht’s keel bulb began to work loose from the keel fin in the high-latitudes of the Indian Ocean. The Dutchman preserved Hayai until a bulk carrier could rendez-vous with the yacht and transfer Budel on board. The solo sailor was forced to watch as the Open 40 sank before his eyes, but Budel immediately began making plans for another circumnavigation. Shortly after the finish of the 2008-09 Portimão Global Ocean Race, Budel bought Class 40 Beluga Racer from the overall, double-handed class winner, Boris Herrmann. “You now have a Dutch entry in the race,” he informed the Race Director, Josh Hall. “I’m going to do the race again on the second Hayai.”
There are also two entries who wish to remain anonymous while their plans develop. The format and framework of the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race appears to have an irresistible appeal for those who mix offshore sailing with journalism and the first British entry comes from a high-profile, yachting magazine publisher with extensive offshore racing experience. Meanwhile, across the North Atlantic, an entry is confirmed from the Northeast USA with a CEO and entrepreneur in ‘green’ technology and energy efficiency reserving a guaranteed place on the startline.
With enquiries and requests for entry forms increasing daily, Race Director, Josh Hall recommends that potential competitors should register their intent without delay. “We are limiting the number of entries to 20 boats plus five boats that may be invited by us as organisers,” explains Hall. “So, a total of 25 boats is the maximum. In order to firmly secure a place on the start line an entry must have paid their entry fee and completed their qualification passage of 2,000 miles aboard their race boat,” he continues. “Thereafter, there will be a waiting list. Judging by the level of interest we are receiving from potential entries, we recommend early sign-up from competitors.”