Denmark SailGP Team presented by ROCKWOOL lines up in Chicago for the United States Sail Grand Prix at Navy Pier on 18-19 June looking to cement its spot amongst the top teams in SailGP, following an impressive showing in Bermuda last month.
The Danish boat, led by driver Nicolai Sehested, claimed equal to its best ever SailGP result in the opening action of Season 3 in Bermuda’s Great Sound in May, and Sehested believes that his crew is within touching distance of achieving that first-ever overall event podium spot in the global racing league.
And Sehested admits that the pressure is now on the Danes to show that it wasn’t a one-off, but instead, the result of a slow and steady evolution across the project during Season 2.
Consistency is key
“Bermuda was a solid event for us, to kick off the new season” he explains. “We were happy with our performance on Day 2, when we led the fleet for much of the day, and if it wasn’t for some technical issues on the final leg of Race 4, we’d probably have made the top three.”
He continues: “I think it just shows that we’re doing the right things. We’ve evolved our crew, adding new talent, and we continue to stay focused – maybe we don’t have the rock stars of some of the other teams, but we’re working hard, digging into the data, and staying open minded.”
“It was a positive way to start the season – but now we need to stay in the mix in Chicago. That consistency is what all of the best SailGP teams can show. Look at the United States SailGP Team last season, they made the final three without even winning a regatta, so it shows that consistently posting good results will keep you in the fighting spots.”
“We know that our top level is enough to beat any team out there, but we need to focus on bringing our bottom level up to a level where, even if we do have a bad or unlucky race, which will always happen in these types of regattas at such a high-level, we can still try and grab some points to keep us up there.”
ROCK The Boat to create a new-generation of foiling talent
Earlier this month, the Danish team announced a new ROCK The Boat development project as part of SailGP’s Race For The Future initiative, which will see its Danish Olympic athletes take on additional foiling training opportunities around Europe in 2022.
The ROCK The Boat squad consists of Olympic medallists Anne-Marie Rindom and Katja Salskov-Iversen; two-time Games competitor Christian Peter Lübeck; and Danish 49er sailor Seb Wright-Olsen. Rindom will step onto the Danish F50 in Chicago in the tactician position this weekend.
“We are investing in future Danish foiling talent, and equipping these already talented athletes with the opportunity to refine their skills in this exciting and fresh side of the sport – and we’re really excited to see what they can do, and watch their skillset and confidence grow,” adds Sehested.
Following Chicago, SailGP will head back to Europe for the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix in Plymouth on 30-31 July – before a big Danish homecoming to the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Copenhagen on 19-20 August.
Inspiring young sailors to take action for our planet
Denmark SailGP Team recently announced a ground-breaking Mini Impact League initiative, in collaboration with SailGP, International 29er class and Royal Danish Yacht Club, which will see the athletes at the 29er European Championships in Copenhagen undertake sustainability challenges, inspired by the work performed in SailGP. In Bermuda, the Danish team finished second overall in the league’s Impact League rankings.
“As Danish sailors, sustainability is in our DNA,” continues Sehested. “Our work in the SailGP Impact League is really important to us, and the opportunity to use this platform to help drive positive impact around the world, in collaboration with our partners ROCKWOOL and One Ocean Foundation, is something that we don’t take lightly.
“We are really excited for our homecoming event ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix this August – it’s going to be the party of the summer in Denmark, and I’m sure the Danes will come out and show the world what we’re all about, as we bring this epic racing to Danish waters.”
Tickets for the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix are now on sale, at www.sailgp.com/tickets