Manley Hopkinson will skipper Boating Partner's VOR entry

Boating Partners UK has announced its intentions to support a syndicate for the Volvo Ocean Race 2005-06. The entry will be skippered by Manley Hopkinson (Skipper – BT Global Challenge 2000-2001) working with fellow syndicate team members including Chairman David Gant from South Africa (former Chairman Worldsport SA), yachting veteran Kevin Bennetts (WRTWR 93-94 and 97-98) and Marketing Director Tim Howland of S2 Marketing (formerly CEO of World Sport Group Europe and Evian Ladies European Tour).

As well as being a professional yachtsman for many years Hopkinson was a former inspector in the Royal Hong Kong Marine Police, had his own boat building and servicing company, served as an officer in the Royal Navy during the Gulf War, attained a degree in marine engineering and worked as a project manager for Granada Media, solving one of its major Year 2000 projects. He was also the skipper of Olympic Group, one of the 12 yachts in the BT Global Challenge 2000-2001. His adventures have not just been restricted to the oceans: he was recently part of the three-man team “Initial Style Explorers” that won the inaugural race to the Magnetic North Pole, 400 miles by ski pulling a 120lb sledge, averaging 35 miles/day. Commenting on the newly formed syndicate, Hopkinson said: “Boating Partners is really excited to be involved with such an incredible global sporting event as the Volvo Ocean Race. The team that we have assembled combines both world class business, marketing and yachting expertise.”

Glenn Bourke, CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race, added: “It’s great to see Manley taking on the ultimate sailing challenge by entering the Volvo Ocean Race. He epitomises all that is unique about this race through his adventurous spirit and dedication to achieving success in the most challenging environments. “