Dee Caffari welcomes Vendee Globe rival Brian Thompson on board Aviva for Fastnet race

When Cowes Week draws to a close this weekend, Aviva and 10 other IMOCA Open 60s will take to the start of the Rolex Fastnet – created in 1925 and held every other year. This 608-mile offshore race will lead a 300-strong fleet from Cowes to Plymouth via the Fastnet Rock in the Irish Sea.

Onboard Aviva, Dee Caffari is delighted to welcome back her fellow Vendée Globe race rival, Brian Thompson who will be taking on the role of navigator and watch leader. Joining the two round-the-world skippers will be Aviva Ocean Racing’s team: Joff Brown; Harry Spedding; James Bird and Cliff Nicholson.

Commenting on her choice, Dee said: “Brian and I did communicate a lot during the Vendée Globe and I really enjoy sailing with people I have raced against. Cowes Week and the Fastnet are perfect opportunities for us to get together and do a bit of racing against our rivals from last winter!”

IMOCA Open 60 Entry list for the Rolex Fastnet 2009:
Akena Vérandas – Arnaud Boissières
Arctic Tern – Mike Sanderson
Artemis Ocean Racing II – Samantha Davies
Artemis Ocean Racing The Profit Hunter – Simon Clay
Aviva – Dee Caffari
BT – Sébastien Josse
HUGO BOSS – AlexThomson
OCEAN OF SMILES – Christophe Bullens
PAKEA BIZKAIA – Unai Basurko
SAFRAN – Marc Guillemot
TOE IN THE WATER – Steve White

To follow the race, visit .