The Volvo Ocean Race has confirmed Fan Pier in Boston as the sole North American stopover when the race visits the US East Coast port city in April-May 2009.
Spanning some 37,000 nautical miles, stopping in 11 ports around the world and taking nine months to complete, the Volvo Ocean Race is the world's premier global race for professional racing crews.
Agreement between race organisers to bring the race to Fan Pier has been backed by the city of Boston and has been made possible by the efforts of the local developer Joe Fallon, who is working closely with city officials to ensure a successful, world-class event at the coveted waterfront location - Fan Pier.
The entire stopover facility including berthing for the seven-boat fleet, race village, entertainment complex and haul-out area will be accommodated on a five-acre Volvo Ocean Race zone within the development site.
Two weeks of festivals and local events are planned for the beginning of May 2009, to celebrate the arrival and departure of the Volvo Ocean Race, Boston's maritime history and the sport of sailing.
The Fallon Company is owner and developer of the large-scale, 21-acre Fan Pier site. Fallon's plans for the area include a five-star hotel, offices, designer boutiques, restaurants and luxury condominiums with 360-degree views of the Boston skyline and harbour.
Fan Pier also brings to life new public parks, a Harbour Walk, a state-of-the-art marina and the internationally acclaimed Institute of Contemporary Art. It is a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly area, and as the newest neighbourhood in the city of Boston is the ideal spot to welcome the Volvo Ocean Race to Boston.
The visit of the Volvo race, Fallon says, will bring heightened awareness to Boston's waterfront, Fan Pier, extreme ocean racing and the sport of sailing in general. "I'm extremely proud and excited that Fan Pier and the city of Boston will join world-class ports like Rio de Janeiro, Cape Town, Singapore and Stockholm as hosts of the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race," Fallon said.
"Fan Pier represents the best of Boston's ability to bring new global events with international audiences to historic Boston Harbour," said Mayor Thomas M. Menino. "We believe this race will showcase Boston and the waterfront as a global destination to residents and tourists alike."
Knut Frostad, CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race, said: "Fan Pier is an excellent fit for us. The Fan Pier site, overlooking Boston Harbour, is ideal and will allow us to accommodate all of our facilities for the Boston Stopover in one prime waterfront location.
"Having visited Fan Pier myself and met with Joe Fallon and his team, I have been struck by their enthusiasm and have no doubt they will put on a fantastic show when the race comes to town."
During the stopover, race organizers will stage a point-scoring In-Port Race in Boston's Outer Harbour, while the Pro-Am Race will be held just off Fan Pier.
Boston is the only North American port stopover for the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race. PUMA, which headquarters its North American operations in the greater Boston area, has entered the race with their boat il mostro representing the U.S. The boat is skippered by Ken Read who has strong ties to the greater Boston area.
At the completion of its stopover at Fan Pier, the re-start of the race continues onto its next port stopover, Galway, Ireland.
The Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09 will be the 10th running of this ocean marathon. Starting from Alicante in Spain, on 4 October 2008, it will, for the first time, take in Kochi, India, Singapore and Qingdao, China before finishing in St Petersburg, Russia.
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