How to win the Volvo Ocean Race pt1


James Boyd takes an in-depth look at John Kostecki's illbruck campaign
There seem to be two schools of thought about John Kostecki's victorious illbruck campaign in the Volvo Ocean Race. There is the "yup, that's the way it should be done" school, who take their hats off in acknowledgement that the German campaign was about as near perfect as could be, that it has taken the Volvo Ocean Race to a new level in much the same way as Paul Cayard and EF did four years ago. Then there is the muttered gripe of some about how it was unfair (!) that illbruck should have had such an advantage and how being so much more advanced in their approach to the Volvo Ocean Race didn't make for good competition - although with just seven minutes separating the top five boats into Gothenburg, this is a hard one to justify. In some sense the two viewpoints sum up the predicament Volvo currently face in steering a new course for their race. John Kostecki has told madfor sailing that the illbruck campaign cost "somewere in the 20s (million$)" and the rumours are that it was in fact closer to $30 million. On the one hand, the Volvo Ocean Race is supposed to be the premier grand prix ocean race where the game should be constantly raised. On the other the illbruck campaign has set a rather high new benchmark in terms of cost. If the race were to stay the same then it is fair to assume that campaigns in 2005 would be looking at a similar budget, or more, to be competitive. Many, in particular Volvo, believe this to be unrealistic and will result in less, not more, boats taking part next time. So how is it possible to spend $20 million or even $30 million on a yacht race? Simple. illbruck Challenge

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