Ken Read, skipper of PUMA Ocean Racing has announced his core crew and management team for the upcoming Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012. The team is leaving Alicante, Spain to bring il mostro, PUMA Ocean Racing’s boat that secured a 2nd place finish in the last Volvo Ocean Race, back to Newport, Rhode Island where the team will immediately start training for the next race. il mostro will serve as the team’s training boat until a new boat, which will compete in the 2011-12 edition of the Volvo Ocean Race, is completed.
[cleeng_content id=”765901342″ description=”99 cents or 10,000 hours. The path to being an expert can be easy or hard. ” price=”0.99″]PUMA has named Juan Yacht Design, of Valencia, Spain as the lead boat designer of the new PUMA Ocean Racing yacht. Juan Kouyoumdjian’s designs have a perfect record in the VOR since the inception of the Volvo Open 70 Rule. They are credited with designing the 2006 VOR winner, ABN AMRO 1 and the 2009 VOR winner, Ericsson 4.
Ken read said:
“The decision to go with Juan to design PUMA’s new boat was a major step forward for the program, and set in motion a number of key hires that have formed the nucleus of the team.”
Two new key members of the team include multiple Volvo Ocean Race winners, Brad Jackson and Tony Mutter. Each sailor was integral to the winning teams in both the 2006 and 2009 races.
Jackson is a three-time winner of the VOR and will serve as design coordinator for PUMA Ocean Racing, mixing the sailing team’s input with Juan Kouyoumdjian’s creative and technical expertise.
Mutter is a two-time VOR winner and will run the aero program, working closely with Steve Calder of North Sails and mast designer, Scott Ferguson.
While sailing, Tony and Brad will also serve as watch captains. Returning from PUMA’s 2009 campaign is bowman and systems manager Casey Smith.
“When the boat breaks offshore Casey has to fix it, so having him be part of design process with the build team early on will save us a lot with durability down the road,” explained Read. Rob Greenhalgh also rejoins the PUMA crew after being a late but welcomed addition in the last race. Returning shore-team members include: Kimo Worthington, General Manager, and Tim Hacket, who will serve as the Shore Team Manager.
New sailing team members include navigator Tom Addis (Telefonica Blue Co-Navigator), Jono Swain (Telefonica Blue watch captain) and Andrew Lewis (Rambler trimmer and ABN AMRO 2 tactician).
“The decisions we make now are the ones that will create success in this race, and having this team of veterans involved early certainly increases our chances to make proper decisions,” said Read of the team assembled so far. “Not only do we have a team that can sail a boat fast, but we have a team that understands what it takes to compete in a race like the Volvo. Great attitudes, great skills, which hopefully increases our chances for success.”
Cumulatively, the management and sailing team for PUMA Ocean Racing shares a level of success difficult to match with 20 Volvo Ocean Race entries and 14 America’s Cup editions. Collectively, the core team holds eight 24-hour mono hull speed records. PUMA will also be the official supplier of all Volvo Ocean Race merchandise.[/cleeng_content]