Friday, May 9, 2008

Rockstar Crew

PUMA Ocean Racing has announced a crew line-up and management team studded with star names and unrivalled experience.

As the team gathered for official training in Newport, Rhode Island, skipper Ken Read unveiled the key players who will be at his side for the campaign.

The crew list has sailors from six countries with 21 Whitbread/Volvo races on their CVs. In keeping with the team’s star quality, PUMA’s challenger for the race will be christened next week.

The sailing team members are: Andrew Cape (Aus, navigator), Rick Deppe (US, media specialist), Justin Ferris (NZ, trimmer/driver), Sidney Gavignet (Fr, watch captain), Jerry Kirby (US, bowman), Jonathan McKee (US, trimmer/driver), Michael Mueller (Ger, bowman/trimmer), Chris Nicholson (Aus, watch captain), Rob Salthouse (NZ, trimmer/driver) and Casey Smith (Aus, bowman).

Key shore team management duties are filled by Kimo Worthington (US, general manager), and Neil Cox (Aus, shore team manager).

Cumulatively, the team boasts a level of success difficult to match with five Volvo/Whitbread wins, 20 America’s Cup campaigns and five wins, along with four Olympic Games entries and two medals.

“A top programme is only as good as the people that manage it and drive it, and we are extremely fortunate to have such a diverse group of the world’s best sailors signed on to help sail PUMA’s Volvo Open 70 around the world as fast as possible,” said Read.

“On the shore side, we have two first-class Volvo veterans managing the intricate logistics and support structure necessary for this race. All of these individuals combined with PUMA’s commitment to the race and the strength of the brand are powerful elements that shape this team and will hopefully lead it to victory.” - Website