After two back-to-back wins in France and Italy, the Emirates GBR SailGP Team is hoping to continue its winning streak at the Spain Sail Grand Prix this weekend. The crew has arrived in Cadiz for the final European event of Season 4 and is sitting second on the leaderboard, tied on points with the home team Spain.
The sun is shining across the Bay of Cadiz with temperatures reaching 26C, but there are fairly light winds forecast for the weekend and SailGP CEO Russell Coutts confirmed all 10 teams will be racing with the 24m wings. Last year in Cadiz, Emirates GBR finished in fifth place overall after some challenging racing conditions. The final day saw light winds and choppy waters; a combination described by drivers as testing for the F50s. Cadiz is known for its confused sea state, with waves bouncing off the city walls and in multiple directions, which makes it very hard to judge maneuvers. Last year’s Grand Prix was won by Quentin Delapierre’s France SailGP Team in a nail-biting final race against the Australians and Americans.
As well as achieving sporting success, the Emirates GBR SailGP Team also has a mission to educate young people on climate change and sustainability through its Race For The Future charity partner, Protect Our Future. The charity provides free to use education resources that are available globally. On Wednesday, Emirates GBR welcomed 87 students from a local school in Cadiz to its base for a Protect Our Future lesson. The students were taught about the actions Emirates GBR is taking to leave a positive impact and drive sustainability and they were inspired to take climate action themselves.
This year in Cadiz, the Emirates GBR F50 catamaran will once again be powered by nature and the brute strength of Olympic gold winning rower Matt Gotrel (GBR) and the Isle of Arran’s Neil Hunter (GBR) on the grinding handles. The wing trim, flight controller and trimmer grinder roles are retained by Iain Jensen (AUS), Luke Parkinson (GBR / AUS) and Nick Hutton (GBR). Sir Ben Ainslie will lead the Team as Driver with Hannah Mills OBE on-board as Strategist and Hannah Diamond as reserve sailor. This weekend in Cadiz also marks the two-year anniversary of the SailGP Women’s Pathway Programme, which trains and develops female athletes to provide them with the opportunity to compete at the top level.
The Spain Sail Grand Prix will take place on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 October, with UK viewers able to watch all the action live on ITVX.