Puma VOR team in Boston for new stopover announcement 8/5/07

At an unveiling ceremony in Boston Harbour on Friday PUMA – the Global sportslifestyle company – introduced its skipper, training boat and PUMA Racing Team see previous news story here for the Volvo Ocean Race. The event also coincided with Boston’s announcement that it will be one of the official ports of call for the next VOR.

The Boston stopover will be in mid-May 2009 and will include a fortnight of festivities and local events to celebrate Boston’s maritime history, the sport of sailing and the Volvo Ocean Race.

Glenn Bourke, CEO, Volvo Ocean Race commented: “The choice of Boston as a North American stopover for the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race is a welcome addition to the ground-breaking route. Boston has a proud association with international sailing and sailors. There has been great enthusiasm from everyone involved in making the Boston stopover happen. I fully expect that Boston will put on a tremendous show when the race comes to town.”

Puma Racing Team headed by Ken Read (USA) is the third confirmed entry of the Volvo Ocean Race joining Ericsson Racing Team and the Mean Machine syndicate backed by Dutch businessman Peter de Ridder in the VOR line-up.

Read was on-hand for the unveiling on at the ceremony, bringing the boat up from its training base in Newport, Rhode Island, after it made the trip across the Atlantic.

The exterior design of the training boat is uniquely PUMA. Conceptualized by Puma’s brand head, Antonio Bertone, with the help of ad agency GBH, the idea was to transform the boat into an object. In this particular case, the object is a shoe, taking inspiration from PUMA’s heritage.

“We wanted to have some fun with the design — basically have a floating shoe out on the water,” says Antonio Bertone, Group Functional Head Brand & Marketing. “So we had the boat painted to look like it’s made from leather and then stitched together. The boat and the Volvo Ocean Race on the whole is just a great platform for PUMA to express its creativity and design-forward thinking.”