Grant Dalton on the Volvo Ocean Race

James Boyd Photography /
Emirates Team New Zealand boss shares his views
The Butler’s Wharf area on the south side of the River Thames was ablaze with red last night, as the Emirates Team New Zealand-powered Camper VO70 flew down the Thames, to do the traditional sailing under Tower Bridge for the benefit of the cameramen. Having nearly been blown off my feet walking across the bridge prior to this, there was, for once, ample wind and the Kiwi crewed VO70 was struggling to hold on to her big kite in the gusts as she came back under the famous London landmark, heading downstream this time. Among the Camper VIPs assembled at the Design Museum on Butler’s Wharf was Emirates Team New Zealand CEO Grant Dalton, who is going to be Europe-based for the next few days, following the VO70 down to Lorient in France (when the 40 knot headwinds ease), where she is stopping briefly this Friday. Dalton then returns to the UK and Plymouth for the second round of AC45 racing at the America’s Cup World Series that kicks off this Saturday. “There is a bit of a tradition with Kiwi boats, bringing them up here and I’m surprised more people don’t do it, because the bridge is really iconic, in the heart of London, the Tower of London, etc," Dalton told us. "And to have breeze to do it was good because normally you go through here and you have to go backwards to keep the sails full!” Having arrived into Felixstowe on a Maersk Line ship from New Zealand, the Camper team have been based up on the east coast these last days, shoehorning in a trip up to South Shields, near Newcastle, were all the sailing teams competing in the Volvo Ocean Race have had to take part in a mandatory sea survival course at the South Tyneside Maritime