Spotlight: Volvo Ocean Race in Miami

This month, The highly acclaimed, known as the “World’s Toughest Ocean Race” and one of the top sporting events worldwide, stopped in Miami, Florida as the only stopover in North America for the prestigious around-the-world  yacht race, which is held only once every 3 years. Competitors typically leave in October from Europe and end the competition around 9 months later. 10 stopovers worldwide deliver a unique global reach in Asia, North & South America, Africa, Middle East & Europe and today it is, quite simply, the ‘Everest of Sailing’.

Official Timekeeper and sponsor of the 24-hour record competition is the highly acclaimed watch brand IWC Schaffhausen, which is also the Official Sponsor of the Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing team, the first Arabian challenger in the 38-year history of the Volvo Ocean Race.

The teams in competition this year are Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand, PUMA Ocean Racing Powered by BERG, Groupama Sailing Team, Team Telefonica and Team Sanya.

The current race started in October 2011 in Alicante, Spain and is en route to  the end point of Galaway, Ireland in early July.  This years route takes the team to over 39,000 nautical miles to  Cape Town, Abu Dhabi, Sanya, Auckland, around Cape Horn to Itajai, Miami, Lisbon, Lorient and finally Galaway.

The downtown Miami Race Village was open from May 6th-20th and hosted pavilions, shows, live music, food, appearances, sailing clinics, sculpture building workshops, parties and more. The Abu Dhabi Tourism Board had a UAE-themed Race Village pavilion, strikingly red with heritage celebrations to welcome fans. Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority leveraged the emirate’s ‘Travellers’ Welcome’ slogan in a specially designed transformer-like pavilion featuring photo opportunities with live Arabic falcons, calligraphy art that turned ordinary names into Arabic works of art and henna specialists that painted intricate designs on visitors’ hands. Host Ports are also home to the Volvo Ocean Race Experience, an interactive attraction designed to emulate the world of a Volvo Ocean Race sailor through its 3D cinema, simulator and winch grinding challenge. 

The Race Villages also provide the ideal place to watch the yachts race, with challenging In-Port Races that bring the excitement  and adrenaline of the seas to the spectators. An estimated four million people will visit the race villages at Volvo Ocean Race Host Ports this year– make sure you’re one of them.

The next stopover for the race is Lisbon, Portugal. The race village will be open from May 31st – June 10th. For more racing info, visit:

Want a chance to win an official Abu Dhabi  sailing shirt like the one pictured below worn by Abu Dhabi Captain Ian Walker? Leave a comment telling us what your favorite part of the Volvo Ocean Race is or your favorite team! GO!

***Dually published on***

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