Profiles of the two Telefónica boats

The Spanish yachting impresario, Pedro Campos, is back for another go after his Movistar campaign in the 2005-06 race suffered an inglorious end when it sunk in the Atlantic Ocean on the homeward leg. Like Ericsson, the Telefónica team is a bigger effort than last time, with two new boats scheduled to take the start. And like Ericsson, one of the boat’s crew veers towards the international, while the other is a more national affair, although both are heavy on Spanish sailors.

On the international team, Bouwe Bekking is back as skipper, and he’s assembled a strong effort, with an intriguing mix of talent on board. Both sailing squads are deep in Olympic talent; in fact, several sailors on the team, such as defending 49er gold medallists Xabi Fernández and Iker Martinez, will be in Beijing before returning to Spain ahead of the race start.

The team has turned to Farr Yacht Design to draw the lines of the two yachts in an exclusive deal. While Farr has an enviable track record in the Whitbread/Volvo, reliability issues in the last race have left the shop with something to prove here. Where in the past, FYD would work with several teams, there’s a sense that the focus of having just one customer this time around is a strength that could see them return to a winning position.

Follow the team online at