18 Jun Pain and pleasure (More…)
Sometimes, you have to ask yourself why anyone in their right mind would want to run a race boat team. Sleepless nights watching trackers, egos, tantrums, “Black Dog Days” and that’s just the owner. Then there’s the boat and the crew. Grounding, blowups, blowouts, knockdowns, bust ups, bills. More bills!
You have to be mad?
Obviously, there are the very special times that make it all worthwhile. Beating the French (the best) in their back yard. Winning the World Championships.
Earlier this week Ned Collier Wakefield and I were guests of the Volvo Ocean Race for the start of the race from Lorient to Gothenburg.
This is the final leg of the iconic race, which had already circled the globe and was to take the seven 65 foot custom built race boats and their multi – national crews “home” to Sweden and a huge welcome from Volvo and the city of Gothenburg.
We were to join Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Commercial Director, Karin Backlund in their chase boat as they set the race marks and supervised the start of this all important final leg.
Special? For us, it was like watching Wimbledon from the Royal Box without having to wear a suit and tie, or to bow to the Queen, or listen to Cliff Richards singing, while having John McEnroe as our private commentator.
The weather was perfect for the 5pm start! Sunshine, 12- 15knots of breeze and the crews determined to make the last leg count. There were still places to be gained. Old reputations to be saved, new ones made.
We raced around in the rib, inside the “magic ” exclusion zone, with Jack “umpiring” the boats as they rounded windward / leeward marks in front of the spectator fleet before they set course for Gothenburg some 1000 nautical miles away.
For us it was a great privileged to be “on the line” for such a special event. To see these great teams’ in action. It was all very “Rock and Roll” – AAA- access all areas. Just the sort of thing to keep the Black Dog at bay and us going back for more.
CEO Team Concise.
P.S. You might well ask, why, of all people, “Volvo” asked Team Concise along for the ride?
Well, guys who run races, like guys who run race teams. They think that one day we might just sign up one of their events. One day they might well be right. Watch this space.