Dee Caffari announces bid to become first woman to sail solo, non-stop around the world in both directions 11/1/07

Dee Caffari has announced her new Open 60 campaign at the Collins Stewart London Boat Show this morning.

Caffari, who just seven months ago completed her challenge of becoming the first woman to sail solo, non-stop around the world against the prevailing winds and currents in a Global Challenge yacht, has plans set to become the first women to sail solo, non-stop around the world in both directions.

This time however, she’ll be racing an Open 60 and will be up against some of the world’s top ocean racing sailors competing in the 2008/09 Vendée Globe.
Aviva, the international savings, investments and insurance group will continue their successful sponsorship and Dee’s new campaign will be known as The Aviva Ocean Racing campaign.

Chatting about the transition from the Global Challenge yacht to an Open 60 Caffari commented: “I’ve had an HGV licence but now I’m in Formula 1 racing circuit. It’s a huge step that I can’t quite comprehend right now. When my initial boat went in the water just after New Year I did actually feel that someone was going to come round the corner shouting: “?what are you doing getting someone else’s boat ready.” I hasn’t quite sunk in yet, that the boat is actually mine now. I’ve seen the footage of the Open 60 sailing and my stomach kind of rises and I think, what have I got myself into now?”

In the first phase of the relatively short run-up period to her campaign she will use a training boat,Aviv, formerly known asHellomoto. The preparation of a new purpose built race boat for the 2008 Vendée Globe entry will also start immediately including a series of IMOCA Open 60 races throughout 2007/8 in preparation for her entry into the 2008/9 Vendée Globe. Caffari and her team have selected the highly experienced Merfyn Owen of Owen Clarke Designs to design the new boat.