Skipper Ian Walker commented at today’s official farewell. ‘The decision to set up our training base in Ireland has been very successful for us. It offered us the perfect location for testing the boat in a range of conditions. The crew were overwhelmed by the welcome we received in Ireland and are looking forward to returning on 23 May 2009 as we race across the Atlantic from Boston with the other competitors for the Galway stopover’
Green Dragon will sail to Alicante arriving around 30 August. The shore team is already en route to Alicante and the base will be set up awaiting the boat’s arrival. The team will undergo further training both on the water and on shore and final work and fit out will be completed on the boat. Green Dragon’s full livery and crew list will be announced in Alicante in late September.
Let’s do it Global is a not for profit organisation that was set up to organise both the Galway Volvo Ocean Race stopover (Let’s do it Galway) and the Irish entry in the race, Green Dragon. A condition of winning the contract to host the Volvo Ocean Race in Galway was that a team would be entered in the race. The team is principally funded by the private sector. A syndicate of Irish businessman have funded the build of the boat while a group of Chinese companies are the principal sponsors of the boat.
The vision of Let’s do it Global is centred on maritime challenge and youth development in a spirit of excellence and global adventure. The Let's do it Global team are working with Failte Ireland in maximising their investment in the project both by delivering on the targets for the Galway stopover and by working with Tourism Ireland in marketing Ireland at all the stopovers around the world.
Enda O’Coineen, Chairman of Let’s do it Global stated at today’s farewell: ‘It is with pride that we watch Green Dragon depart Irish waters for the start of the Volvo Ocean Race. Over two years of planning and investment has been committed to this project with many people offering their services on a voluntary basis. I would like to thank everyone who has worked on the project including all our sponsors who have made the project a reality. Now we have to concentrate our efforts on promoting Ireland as a tourism and maritime destination in cooperation with Failte Ireland and Tourism Ireland in all the stopover ports around the world. We wish the crew of Green Dragon a safe and successful campaign and we will be waiting on 23 May 2009 in Galway to offer them and the six other competitors in the race a ‘cead mile failte’.
Green Dragon will depart from Dun Laoghaire in a parade of sail at 1600hrs
on Saturday 23 August. Hundreds of boats are expected to join the colourful
flotilla as it head south to Alicante.