Swedish Victory Challenge 'pack bags' and head for Dubai for winter training 6/12/06
The Swedish Victory Challenge have followed in the footsteps of the Swiss Alinghi America’s Cup Challenge by announcing today that they intend to base themselves in Dubai for winter training see previous Alinghi news story here.
The team’s two yachts Örn (SWE 63) and Orm (SWE 73), each weighing in at 24 tons, will be transported by air from Spain to the United Arab Emirates in less than 10 day’s time and will be joined by some of the team members, boatbuilders and sailmakers. A temporary base, including a sail loft, workshops and offices, is currently being set up at Jumeirah Beach.
Although the training in Valencia this autumn has been effective, the team is hoping to not only achieve more days on the water throughout the winter in Dubai but benefit from similar conditions expected during a Valencia spring/summer. Commenting on the team move Magnus Holmberg – team leader and helmsman – said: “We have been given a unique opportunity to site our training there in January. Due to the sailing conditions in Dubai being equal to those in Valencia during April and May, we are counting on considerably more high-quality training days on the water.”
According to Holmberg the team has been involved with a lot of sail development and rigging testing in preparation for SWE 96, the new boat which is now being completed at the shipyard in Lindholmen Science Park in Göteborg.
Holmberg added: “The first period of time after launching an America’s Cup boat is about structural tests and optimization. It takes some time before you can start to sail full out. Therefore, it is impossible to say no when we have a chance to add so many days of pure sailing training.”
The Louis Vuitton Cup begins on 16 April and after a round robin, where all the teams meets each other twice, and seven teams are excused from continued competition. In the 32nd America’s Cup, there are no quarter-finals (as there were in Auckland). Only four teams continue to the next round, the semi-finals.
Holmberg concluded: “Our goal is to take one of the four semi-final places. With winter training in Dubai, we believe that our chances of achieving that goal will increase.”