Luke ‘Parko’ Parkinson has competed in both the America’s Cup and the Volvo Ocean Race, including winning the 2014/15 edition with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing. Parko will control the main system on the F50 which alters the rudders and foils. Parko competed with Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen for the Japan SailGP Team in Season 1 before joining Ben Ainslie’s British outfit.
Parkinson began sailing in a mirror dinghy when he was five-years-old at Freemantle Sailing Club in Perth, Western Australia. He eventually began competing in Mirrors, with his first professional race coming in 2010 at the Flinders Island Race.
Three years later, he joined Objective Australia as a trimmer for the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in San Francisco.
Parkinson then shifted his focus to the Volvo Ocean Race as a one of only two under-30 members of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, spending 10 months competing in the gruelling competition but helped power the crew to the event title.
Soon after the event’s conclusion, he didn’t waste any time getting back on the water and joined Artemeis Racing for its campaign in the 35th America’s Cup, progressing to the Louis Vuitton Cup finals before falling to eventual champions Emirates Team New Zealand.
He returned to the Volvo Ocean Race for the 2017-18 competition, joining Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag.
Parkinson comes from a talented sailing family, as his sister won gold at the Beijing Olympics.
When he’s not sailing, he is an extreme sports enthusiast, whether its surfing, skateboarding or windsurfing.