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The Ocean Race: North Sails named VO65 Official Sail Supplier

The Ocean Race

The one-design VO65 fleet will race its third lap of the planet in the 2021-22 edition of The Ocean Race with a sail wardrobe provided by North Sails.

As the Official One Design Sail Supplier to the fleet, North Sails will outfit each boat with seven sails, using its latest 3Di technology, which itself was born out of a collaboration between North Sails and Ocean Race teams, and provides reliable shape-holding, durability, and lightweight, high-end performance.

The 2021-22 edition of The Ocean Race is 38,000 nautical miles and takes in some of the toughest and most testing ocean miles on the planet, with the best sailors in the world pushing their boats harder than ever before. Performance and reliability is critical.


“Over the past two editions of the Race, our arrangement with North Sails to equip the VO65 fleet has contributed to the closest racing in the long history of the event,” said Phil Lawrence, the Race Director for The Ocean Race. “This competitiveness comes when the teams know they have sails they can push to the absolute limit, without compromising safety, durability or performance.

“We consulted with our VO65 teams who made clear their preference to again have a single-supplier for sails as in the past two races, and we’re very happy to be able to continue our relationship with North Sails into the next edition of The Ocean Race.”

Image © Sam Greenfield/Volvo AB

The relationship between North Sails and The Ocean Race goes back decades, and many within North Sails have sailed with various teams and won the race, while numerous designers and sailmakers have supported the technical side of programmes in their quest to finish first around the world.

“The Ocean Race is one of the most prestigious events in our sport and is the ultimate proving ground for the durability of 3Di,” remarked North Sails President Ken Read.

“By introducing drones into the last event we have gotten to see how much abuse our sails can withstand. We are profoundly proud that our sails will have gone three editions on the VO65. North Sails and North 3Di are 100% on board for the 2021-22 race and look forward to working with the new race organisers and the teams in their upcoming adventure.”

The next edition of The Ocean Race is scheduled to start from Alicante, Spain in October 2021, with stops in Cabo Verde; Cape Town, South Africa; Shenzhen, China; Auckland, New Zealand; Itajaí, Brazil; Newport, Rhode Island; Aarhus, Denmark; The Hague in The Netherlands; before the Grand Finale in Genoa, Italy.

Read Ken Read’s thoughts on the route for the 2021-22 edition

Main image © Austin Wong/The Ocean Race