Saint-Petersburg – The Gazprom Swan 60 Class is entering their final month of race preparation before their 2014 circuit commences on the 30th May in Russia. Over one hundred Swan 60 skippers and crew will be competing in the third edition of the annual Nord Stream Race. All competitors on this year’s Gazprom Swan 60 circuit will need to be on their game early in the season. The first event is dominated by a 750 nautical mile offshore race from Saint-Petersburg to Warnemünde, Germany with a short stopover in Helsinki, Finland where inshore racing is scheduled on the 1st June.
Within the six Swan 60 entries confirmed, the fleet includes a brand new Swan 60 racing in the Nord Stream Race as Team China. This Asian addition to the playing field demonstrates the expanding global attraction of the Gazprom Swan 60 Class. Recently launched at the Nautor yard in Pietarsaari (FIN), Team China has yet to prove themself on the Baltic race course.
The freshly formed Russian Youth Team will not only be racing as a squad for the first time, but this will also be their offshore yachting debut. Inspired by the pull of racing alongside teams with Volvo Ocean Race, America’s Cup and Olympic veterans, the Russian Youth Team see the Nord Stream Race as an incredible opportunity, as well as a tough challenge against seriously experienced crews.
Tim Kröger, heading up ‘Team Europe’, has shaken up his race strategy this year with the appointment of Ulrike Schümann as their female skipper. Ulrike, an Olympic Yngling sailor from Germany is used to short course styles, the Nord Stream Race will be her initiation into long distance yachting in a pivotal role within the crew.
The Gazprom Swan 60 Class is predicted to reach Warnemünde, Germany on 5th or 6th June, with a final prize giving on the 7th June.