A lot has happened since my last producers log. The teams have completed legs 5, 6 and 7 of the race and we have Sailabrated with them in Itajai, Brazil and Newport, America.

Volvo Ocean Race 2014/15 – Producer’s Log #6 and 7

Posted by: Jo Rees on May 29th, 2015 IN Volvo Ocean Race Producer's Log

A lot has happened since my last producers log.  The teams have completed legs 5, 6 and 7 of the race and we have Sailabrated with them in Itajai, Brazil and Newport, America.

Leg 5 to ItajaÍ was not without drama.  Dongfeng Race Team broke its mast 240 nautical miles west of Cape Horn, forcing the team to retire from the leg 5. And 3 teams also suffered the Chinese Gybe, aka the Death Roll.

ItajaÍ in Brazil, is located in north-central coast of Santa Catarina State, south of Rio De Janeiro and in my opinion is one of Brazil’s best kept secrets.  We stayed 10km south of ItajaÍ  in the beach resort of Balneário Camboriú, popular amongst South Americans. The city is also known by the nickname “Brazilian Dubai”, due to its high number of skyscrapers and affluent tourists.

The cities central beach is in constant use with activities like Jogging, Yoga, Volleyball, Football Volleyball!, Paragliding, Paddle Boarding, Surfing.  You name it and its happening on the beach.  At night the main ocean boulevard called Avenida Atlântica (Atlantic Avenue), becomes a meeting place for locals and tourists. The beach huts which line the boulevard stay open late serving up potent Caipirinha’s.  We liked beach hut 16, but they are all pretty great.

Brazil beach


Brazil group

The Race Village had a real buzz about it in ItajaÍ; full of life and music.  We saw the most amazing Samba band which had everyone dancing to their hypnotic beats.


Brazil village

Brazil samba

We delivered 2 more successful Sailabration shows on the 5th and 6th June, hosted by the president of Volvo Buses, Håkan Agnevall and President of Volvo Cars Bazil, Luis  Rezende.  We are now more than half way to reaching our total of 30 Sailabration shows by the end of the race.

Brazil show

The performers and I were lucky enough to be invited out on the water to follow the In-Port Race.  Our RIB allowed us to get really close to the action and experience the racing.  However, extremely light winds meant there was less high speed action and more tactical sailing, resulting in a nail biting finish and first place for Team Brunel.


Brazil boat

Brazil boat 2


So, it’s Adeus ItajaÍ and hello Newport, USA.


And it’s welcome back to Dongfeng Race Team, who after retiring from Leg 5, due to a broken mast, arrived first into Newport USA after covering 5,101 nautical miles during Leg 6.

Newport, Rhode Island, is situated in-between New York and Boston, on America’s East Coast.  It is one of America’s most famous sailing towns, thanks to the Americas Cup and now the Volvo Ocean Race.

The race really did come to town in Newport.  Local bars, restaurants and shops all showed their support, with especially created neon bar signs, Ocean Race cocktails and beautiful works of art on display in galleries, depicting the teams and the race. Newport also exceeded expectations with 125,000 visitors to the Race Village.

Newport bar

Newport sign

Newport street

Sustainability was high on the agenda at the Newport stopover.  Sailors for the Sea awarded the Volvo Ocean Race, its Platinum Level certification, as a Clean Regatta. Founded in 2004, Sailors for the Sea is a leading conservation organization that engages, educates, inspires and activates the sailing and boating community towards healing the oceans. The stopover set a goal of being a carbon-neutral event and that goal is set to be met.  For example, visitors to the Race Village at Fort Adams State Park were encouraged to bring a personal water bottle for filling at water stations, and all plates, napkins and utensils were required to be compostable.


Newport boat

Another two very well received shows delivered stateside.  Our performers, Helen, Billy, Katie and Henrik are very talented individuals, thank you all!  Below is a snap taken of Billy and Helen during rehearsals.

Newport rehersals

As we left Newport, driving over the bridge, en route to the airport, we saw the truly glorious sight of the boats racing out towards sea, surrounded by hundreds boats sending them on their way. Destination Lisbon, 2,800 nautical miles away.

Talk to you soon, when we say Bom Dia Lisboa and welcome back to Team Vestas Wind.


Jo Rees

Jo Rees

Jo Rees is an event producer at Line Up predominantly working with automotive and financial clients. She hails from Porthcawl in Wales but is currently to be found globe-trotting whilst she follows the Volvo Ocean Race around the world creating ‘sailabrations’ in every port.

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