Mike Golding and Bernard Stamm sign up for Velux 5 Oceans this Autumn 7/2/06

British skipper Mike Golding and team sponsor Mick Bremans, Managing Director of Ecover, officially announced their intention to participate in the Velux 5 Oceans, the solo around the world race that will start from Bilbao, Spain on 22 October 2006.STOP PRESSnews has also just been received that Bernard Stamm – winner of the previous event – has also signed up in Bilbao today.

Golding, the current IMOCA and FICO World Champion, is still looking for the ultimate success – to win an international solo round the world race.

Golding explains: “The Velux 5 Oceans appeals for two reasons. This race, formerly the Around Alone, remains unfinished business for me! It is the only event I have not completed in my professional sailing career and provides me with an immediate opportunity to go for a bullet in a major solo around the world race.

“The Velux 5 Oceans is a race that is attractive for competitors, sponsors and race followers. In many respects it has all the potential to become the foremost IMOCA event. A solo around the world event with stopovers creates truly global opportunities for sponsoring companies, as well as creating an exciting and competitive course for the teams involved.”

Golding, whose Open 60 Ecover is now in a refit and modification for the race, hopes his participation will encourage other IMOCA skippers to take on the challenge. “With teams from Canada, Brazil, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, UK and France actively working towards the race, this could easily become a fantastic nation v nation event, something not previously seen in the class,” mused Golding.

“I am particularly delighted that Swiss sailor Bernard Stamm (the 2002 winner) has also announced his participation. I believe the Velux 5 Oceans can deliver on all counts and the race will provide us with further opportunities to develop our team for the future,” concluded Golding.

Velux 5 Oceans – The Route

22 October 2006 Start of leg 1 from Bilbao, Spain

Early December ETA in Fremantle, West Australia

14 January 2007 Start of leg 2 from Fremantle

Early March ETA in Florida, USA

15 April 2007 Start of leg 3 from Florida

Late April ETA finish in Bilbao