Around Boat Show time, sailboat manufacturers like to tell me that the reason they don’t do racing is because it is a small industry and their customers can’t make the association between high performance R&D developed through competition and buying a boat to go cruising. Sail manufacturers and clothing manufacturers on the other hand do understand that customers feel better about a brand or a product when it has been given endorsement from those at the top of the sport.
Not so long ago, there were not many choices when it came to specialist sailing clothing. Local markets were dominated by local brands with one or two gaining global penetration. Now, with the Volvo Ocean Race reaching a more global audience, clothing brands can capitalise on the international recognition of the few sailing superstars to market their product.
Bouwe Bekking is one of those superstars; one of the handful of all around ambassadors and heros in the sport of sailing. Bekking has recently joined the Magic Marine team to assist and share in the vision and future of the brand to the worlds participants. He says:
“Since my first Volvo Round The World Race new technologies have been developed and integrated in the Volvo boats and one result has been that designers could create super fast sailing boats which reach speeds up to 70 km an hour and can travel distances of nearly 600 miles in 24 hours. The downside for us sailors is that the term fire hose sailing has become a common word on the boats. My goal is to help Magic Marine develop the best offshore gear for a Volvo Ocean Race crew member. It is refreshing to see that Magic Marine has the drive and the knowledge to fill my high demands. One thing I know for sure, if I am well protected on the ocean, the same will be the case for you.”
The demand for sailing fashion will continue to grow on and off the water as sailing gains penetration in new markets. The use of sailors to endorse products will be key to the success of new brands. Max Blom Sr., President of Magic Marine said:
“Bouwe is known in sailors minds as the ‘last man standing on a sinking ship’ or the ‘toughest guy’ but most importantly the most trusted skipper in ocean racing. We look forward to grow with his experiences, learn from his knowledge and live through the stories. This will be an exciting ride.”