St Petersburg Yacht Club launches offshore race

Nord Stream Race will see invited teams race to Finland and Sweden in Swan 60s

Tuesday August 21st 2012, Author: James Boyd, Location: Russia

The Yacht Club of Saint-Petersburg, Russia, has launched a 750 nautical mile long annual Baltic offshore race scheduled to start on October 17, 2012.

The race will follow the route of the Nord Stream pipeline through the Baltic Sea and will cross the waters of Russia, Finland, Sweden and Germany, bringing together participants from more than 15 European countries.

Backed by Gazprom, The Nord Stream Race is an invitational event, open to Swan 60s for the inaugural edition in 2012 with open entry for future editions.

With €100,000 prize money for the overall winner, the event is expected to be fiercely contested.

Five teams have been confirmed for the inaugural Nord Stream Race:

- Team Europe skippered by Tim Kröger, sponsored by Nord Stream AG.
- Team France will be sponsored by Stroygazconsulting representing Yacht Club de France.
- Team Germany skippered by Thomas Jungblut representing the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, sponsored by Stroygazmontazh.
- Team Holland skippered by Pieter Keijzer representing the Royal Netherlands Yacht Club, sponsored by Gazprom International
- Team Russia skippered by Vladimir Liubomirov representing the Yacht Club of Saint-Petersburg, sponsored by Gazprom.

Starting from Saint Petersburg on Thursday 18 October, the fleet of Swan 60s will race directly to Helsinki, Finland. Helsinki will host the fleet for three days with a Match Racing Regatta scheduled for Saturday 20 October followed by an Open Day for the general public, media and guests to view the yachts.

Monday 22 October will see the fleet depart to race to Gotland, Sweden where they will pit-stop overnight on Wednesday 24 October before the final leg to Greifswald, Germany. The race is scheduled to end on Saturday 27 October with a parade of sail by the fleet along the river before a final celebration and prize giving.

The event will attract a range of European nationals – with stops in four different countries and crew members from around Europe, this spirit will continue through the International Jury with members from Great Britain, Denmark, Poland, Estonia, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Germany.

Vladimir Liubomirov, Commodore, Yacht Club of Saint-Petersburg, commented: “We aim to create an internationally renowned long distance sailing race within the Baltic, bringing together the bordering countries to encourage the growth of international sailing in the area and promote a closer integration with the Baltic Sea countries.”

The Nord Stream Race will take place annually, with the inaugural edition starting in October 2012 and the second edition planned for late September 2013. The commitment of the Organising Authority, Yacht Club of Saint-Petersburg, and the support of its partners is in place for the long term.

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