Abu Dhabi Rejoins Volvo Ocean Race Circuit in 2014-2015

The Volvo Ocean Race will return to Abu Dhabi in 2014, and they will again enlist Ian Walker to skipper a local entry. The announcement was made yesterday at a ceremony in the city, located south of Dubai on the United Arab Emirates’ Persian coast.


Photos: Nick Dana / Volvo Ocean Race

“Abu Dhabi presented a truly original and massively appealing stopover during the last edition, with its own unique feel, and this announcement will only strengthen the legacy of the Race in the city and the country,” said Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad. “The leg from Recife to Abu Dhabi will be one of the longest and most challenging in the 40-year history of this race. Heading into the Southern Ocean is never easy and this route will test the sailors to the limit. The finish line in Abu Dhabi will be one of the most eagerly awaited in the race. What we do know for sure is that the Southern Ocean will be a real hazard, and we’re already looking at ice exclusion zones to protect the fleet.”

According to the Volvo Ocean Race, the Abu Dhabi stopover drew more than 120,000 visitors in the 2011-2012 edition. “Our involvement with the Volvo Ocean Race captured the imagination of our people, who have strong maritime heritage links,” said His Excellency Sheikh Sultan Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman, Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi). “The legacy of the last race is an increase in the breadth of sailing and watersport facilities available, which is something we will build on over this second outing.”

With the announcement of Abu Dhabi, the 2014-2015 race route is as follows:

  • Alicante, Spain (START)
  • Recife, Brazil
  • Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
  • Undisclosed Port(s)
  • Auckland, New Zealand
  • Itajai, Brazil
  • Newport, Rhode Island, USA
  • Undisclosed Port(s)
  • Gothenburg, Sweden (FINISH)

See this post on the Racing Winds Blog for more information about port announcements and such.