Ericsson Racing team opens winter base on Lanzarote 4/9/07

The Swedish Ericsson Racing Team is starting a new phase in its preparation for the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-2009. On Tuesday, Ericsson’s training yacht set sail from Stockholm to Lanzarote and the training camp that will be the team’s base for almost a year.

A combination of Ericsson’s two crews is now sailing to Lanzarote. Brad Jackson from the international crew, with four Whitbread/Volvo Ocean Races behind him, is in command for the voyage. Also onboard is Anders Lewander, skipper of the Nordic crew which, during the journey, will focus on selecting crew members.

Lewander says: “This will be our first lengthy sailing trial. We have more than 2,500 nautical miles ahead of us, which we have to cover in 9-10 days. And we have up to five Nordic sailors who have to convince us that they should be in the crew for the Volvo Ocean Race.”

They are sailing Ericsson’s recently acquired boat, which has now left Sune Karlsson’s boatyard at Saltsjöbaden outside Stockholm. The yacht, previously known as ABN AMRO One (winner of the most recent Volvo Ocean Race). Completely repainted in a new design, it is now the training boat for the Ericsson Racing Team. Ericsson’s two race yachts for the next Volvo Ocean Race are being built in Kista, outside Stockholm: the first will be launched late in the fall and the second next spring.

Ericsson Racing Team’s new training base on the Canary Islands will be the crews’ winter home. The location has been chosen well: the Canary Islands have one of the world’s best climates, with good winds and very few rainy days. This means good conditions for effective training, and few days lost to rain or lack of wind, which can affect work on technical improvements.

The base is at Puerto Calero on Lanzarote. It is the only marina in the archipelago that can provide moorings, a land base, sail loft and accommodation all within five minutes’ walk. Puerto Calera is also only 10 minutes from Lanzarote airport.