Sailing-All-female crew to contest next Volvo Ocean Race

STOCKHOLM, Aug 21 (Reuters) – An all-women’s crew will

contest offshore sailing’s Volvo Ocean Race in 2014-15, the new

team’s Swedish backers announced on Tuesday.

They will be the first team of women to take on the

39,000-nautical mile race since 2001-02.

The 10-strong, international lineup will be chosen over the

next year and are backed by SCA, a Sweden-based multinational

maker of hygiene products.

The first all-female team to enter the race was Maiden,

skippered by Tracy Edwards in 1989-90. The last was Amer Sports

Too.

“It’s been too long,” Volvo Ocean Race chief executive Knut

Frostad said. “There’s 50 percent of the population there we

haven’t been representing so this is a great day for the race.”

The team are the first to enter the 12th edition of the race

which is run every three years and began life as the Whitbread

Round the World Race in 1973. The most recent edition was

completed in July with victory for French team Groupama.

The 2014-15 race will be contested in new one-design,

65-foot boats which organisers said in June was a way of

bringing down costs to enter and putting less of an emphasis on

physical strength, effectively reopening the race to women

sailors.

(Editing by Tom Bartlett)


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