Piracy Fears Force Sailing Race Re-Route

Boats to be transported to undisclosed port

Aug 18, 2011
Outside Magazine

Organizers of the Volvo Ocean Race said Thursday that they will change this year's race course over concerns about piracy in the Indian Ocean. In the event's second leg, competitors will depart from Cape Town and head to an unspecified port before organizers transport the boats to the finish in Abu Dhabi. The process will be repeated in the third stage, which runs from Abu Dhabi to Sanya, China. Pirates kidnapped more than 1,000 sailors last year alone, many in the Indian Ocean, and slow-moving sailboats are especially vulnerable to attack. "We have consulted leading naval and commercial intelligence experts and their advice could not have been clearer: 'Do not risk it,' " race CEO Knut Frostad said. Seven boats will compete in this year's event, which begins in Alicante, Spain, on October 29 and will cover more than 39,000 miles before next July's finish in Ireland.

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