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Denmark SailGP Team goes full circle as SailGP heads Down Under

16 DECEMBER 2021News
  • Denmark

Denmark SailGP Team presented by ROCKWOOL driver Nicolai Sehested hopes that his team can show just how far it has progressed, as the SailGP F50 fleet races Season 2’s penultimate regatta in Sydney this weekend.

The Australia Sail Grand Prix, presented by KPMG, is the Danish team’s first repeat event since it joined the global racing league in 2019 – and Sehested is keen to post a strong result to mark the completion of a circle which has been almost two years in the making.

“It feels like a long time ago now, but this is where it all started for us,” he said. “It’s fantastic to be back in Sydney – we’re excited to be here, and we’re in really good shape going into the weekend.”

When the Danish team made its SailGP debut in February 2020, it was the newest entry into the fleet and the ROCKWOOL athletes hit the water with just 20 hours of training under their belts.

“That first Sail Grand Prix was a completely new experience for us – and a very steep learning curve. Looking back at the footage, we weren’t sailing well, it wasn’t pretty, but that’s how it is as a new team in SailGP.”

He continued: “It’s different for us today – we’ve learned a lot, we’re competitive, and we’ve shown we can win races, so now it’s about putting a good regatta together. We know we can sail the boat and challenge any team in SailGP on our day, so now it’s about being consistent and making it all work.”

The Danish team is bolstered by the addition of Denmark’s Olympic champion, Anne-Marie Rindom, who was recently nominated for ROLEX World Sailor of the Year following her memorable victory in Tokyo.

And Sehested will be hoping that Rindom can bring those winning habits to the Danish boat, which is still chasing a first overall podium position this season.

“We’re excited to have Anne-Marie back with us, and she will be thrown right in at the deep end with a lot of jobs onboard. She will be able to help me get a good overview of the race course.”

He added: “It’s a perfect race week for her to come in and learn a lot. There’s challenging racing, with Shark Island in the middle of the race course, so her tactical knowledge and vision onboard will be very welcome.”

Rindom, who – alongside teammate Katja Salskov-Iversen, joined Denmark SailGP Team in April as one of the WPP athletes under SailGP’s Race For The Future initiative – experienced her first racing onboard the foiling F50 catamaran earlier this week as the Danish boat launch in Sydney Harbour.

“It’s my first time sailing in Sydney Harbour, and I’m stoked about it. I just did my first racing on the F50 and it’s much more full-on than training. The competition is super tight, and everyone is right next to each other, so you have to push the boat as much as possible.”

She continued: “It’s just great to be here and around the team. You can’t underestimate the amount you can learn just by being out on the water with great sailors, and I’m really keen to learn more.”

The Australia Sail Grand Prix presented by KPMG will be shown live on TV2 Sport from 0545 on Friday 17 December and Saturday 18 December. To find out where you can catch the action in other markets, head to sailgp.com/watch.

CP Lubeck