Today's Telefonica Press Conference: Alicante
Today's Telefonica Press Conference: AlicanteReport Abuse
Nothing like being the only American in a predominantly Spanish press conference and then having it pointed out to the room full of people. That would be the highlight experience of the day...thanks Bouwe!
Actually, a huge thank you to Bouwe Bekking who made a sincere effort to include myself and maybe two others who had no idea what was being discussed. This is an important thing to note about Bouwe as a person and the team's hope to connect with people following the race: Spanish or not.
It wasn't a long press conference and here are the high points: Are the crews and boats interchangeable and the answer to both questions was yes. They have put great effort in setting up the boats to make them virtually identical, only difference being that Telefonica Black was built in New Zealand with different manufacturing materials but to the same molds and standards of Blue's. In the two boat testing, they have found both to be well matched and could easily swap out either with the other.
The same is with the crew. To date the crews for each boat is set for leg one, but if need be, they have already trained with crew being mixed about in every combination thinkable. Telefonica Black is the principle "Spanish Team", with Telefonica Blue carrying a greater mix in nationalities, however, together they sail as representatives of Spain.
The Spanish members cover crew who've gone through the ranks of Opti to Olympics, America's Cup and Volvo. A hope of the Spanish Volvo entry is to demonstrate to their own country the strengths of the Spanish sailing programs. To the world, their versatility in the sport. One may also note, their ability to work collaboratively with non-Spanish sailors as well.
On a personal note, have found the Telefonica members to be sincere and gracious. When my housing fell through and found myself in a country I do not speak the language and no place to sleep, it was Telefonica members who sorted my out. Now if only I could have thanked them properly in Spanish!