The 14th edition of The Ocean Race, the fully-crewed, around the world yacht race, started from Alicante, Spain on Sunday.
As The Ocean Race celebrates its 50th jubilee anniversary, a fleet consisting of the best sailors in the world set off on what is widely considered to be the toughest test of a team in sport.
A fleet of six VO65 one-design yachts – including Racing for the Planet from the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team – set off on the first stage of The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint. Two hours later, five IMOCA class yachts – the high-tech, foiling, flying race boats that are in The Ocean Race for the first time – started in glamour conditions on the waters off Alicante’s Ocean Live Park. Both fleets are now racing to Cabo Verde, some 1900 nautical miles away.
All the sailors were farewelled by over 110,000 exuberant fans who visited the park this weekend to enjoy The Ocean Race experience.
Final attendance for Alicante will be available following the closure of Ocean Live Park on Sunday night, but Saturday’s attendance count of over 60,400 visitors was a record-breaking day in five editions of race starts in Alicante.
While the Alicante start period featured perfect January weather with warm temperatures under sunny skies, the sailors are expecting gale force westerlies to build overnight, with a heavy sea state making the passage to Gibraltar and the trade winds in the Atlantic a treacherous one.
VO65 fleet first off the mark
The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint was the first race to get underway in Alicante on Sunday and for the start at 1405 CET. Watch the Start Here: