Heading back to Newport!

Text by Jonno Turner
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No rest 'til Sanya
Heading back to Newport! Text by Jonno Turner
 
The Volvo Ocean Race will once again head back to Rhode Island, it was announced today.

Newport, the sailing-mad coastal town which hosted the event for the first time in May, will again welcome the Race in its 13th edition, in 2017-18.

The announcement came in Providence, Rhode Island earlier this afternoon, where Volvo Ocean Race's Tom Touber broke the news alongside Sail Newport's Brad Read and Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo.

“We’re delighted to be able to confirm that Newport will be staging a second consecutive stopover in 2018,” said Tom.

“Everything worked brilliantly in Newport in May - and we were delighted with the large amount of spectators from the U.S. and elsewhere, who supported the stopover."

Indeed, over 131,000 fans visited the Race Village during the event's stop in Rhode Island.

The incredible battling on the water, combined with a stunning location steeped in history and culture, left many visitors desperately hoping that there would be a repeat of the stopover next race.

Brad Read, who heads Sail Newport, which masterminded the stopover this year, declared that he's delighted to have the chance to repeat - and improve on – the success of their inaugural hosting of the round-the-world marathon.

“Sail Newport together with all of our outstanding partners, organised and hosted the most successful North American stopover in Volvo Ocean Race history,” he said.

“We did this as a non-profit organisation combined with a whole lot of community heart and passion because we knew the event would be a remarkable success.”

He continued: “I believe strongly that tourists, fans, sponsors and media will travel from all over the world to Rhode Island to be part of the next Newport stopover.

“Everyone wants the Race back here. The State, the marine, business, education communities, and fans, will follow the Race until it arrives back at Castle Hill in 2018.”

The news that Newport will again be hosting the event means that seven ports for the next edition of the 42-year-old race are already known.

The east coast port joins Alicante (Spain), Cape Town (South Africa), Auckland (New Zealand), Cardiff (United Kingdom), Lisbon (Portugal) and Gothenburg (Sweden) on the list of confirmed stopovers for the 2017-18 edition.

“The route is already shaping up very nicely, although we have several more key port announcements to come, probably early in the New Year,” added Tom.

The precise dates of the fleet’s visit in 2018 are not yet known but will be announced when the full route is unveiled early next year.