OffShore Challenges Adds Another Imoca 60 to the Fleet.

An interesting thing is happening in sailing. The concept of the team is being muddied by management companies running multiple boats with multiple sponsors akin to the way large NASCAR ‘Teams’ work.

Artemis Ocean Racing, sponsored by one of the UK’s leading investment management companies, has appointed Offshore Challenges to oversee the management of their existing IMOCA 60 sailing team and campaign. Artemis Ocean Racing will compete in various events this year including the Artemis Challenge at Cowes Week, the Fastnet race, and the double handed Transat Jacques Vabre, that starts in November.

Offshore Challenges is part of OC Group which includes another IMOCA 60 campaign – BT Team Ellen. As a result, the company has a world class reputation for ocean racing campaigns. OC Events, the events arm of OC Group have worked together with Artemis before, during The Artemis Transat 2008 and share joint values of professionalism and integrity, as well as seeking to support British industry and endeavour.

Artemis Investment Management’s CEO Mark Tyndall commented:

“Entering a highly competitive, top level sporting arena for the first time is always a challenge and the team have learnt a great deal from the last three years. We have an undiminished commitment to strive for success in the future and we believe that a partnership with Offshore Challenges will be a great way to leverage what has been started. We are greatly looking forward to building on this experience with Offshore Challenges and look forward to the year ahead.”

It is believed that Vendée Globe skipper Jonny Malbon, will continue to be involved with the team.

The concept of a single company running two competing entries with separate branding is quite new in sailing, though it does happen in other sports. The most high-profile is NASCAR where a company like Hendrick Motorsport runs champions Jimmy Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr side by side – one sponsored by Lowes, one by DuPont and one by Amp energy drinks.