Sailing enthusiasts in Southeast Asia will have a chance to get close to eight Volvo Open 70 boats during the Race Village Festival from January 8 to 18, 2009, part of the Singapore Stopover activities of the elite Volvo Ocean Race. They are to arrive in the Lion City on December 22 and leave for Qingdao, China on January 18, the longest duration of any berthing on the schedule. The third port-of-call in Asia is Kochi in India.
Venue of the ONEº15 Marina Club in Sentosa Cove, Sentosa Island.
The yachts, measuring 70 feet and acknowledged as the fastest racing monohulls in the world, are manned by 10 professional sailors and one media crew member. The race, covering nine months of sailing and 37,000 nautical miles, involves teams who sail over five oceans across four continents – Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas.
Entry to the Race Village is free and highlights include rides on a purpose-built simulator, providing visitors the feeling of being onboard a Volvo Open 70 yacht and the sensation of speed whilst being pummelled by strong winds and spray; the Dome which offers a cinematic experience inside a large air-conditioned hemisphere that will walk people through a day in a sailor’s life; and opportunities to race against each other in mini-Volvo Open 70s. The Grinding Challenge also allows the interested to pit themselves against each other or the clock just as competitive sailors do.
As an added treat, the UBS In-Port Challenge and Pro-Am regattas will take place on January 10 and 11 respectively.
Besides ONEº15 Marina Club, other event partners are the Singapore Tourism Board and Sentosa Leisure Group.
Margie T Logarta