pounds 10m bid for Whitbread race glory

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The Independent Online


A pounds 10m bid to win the next Whitbread Round the World Race was announced in Stockholm yesterday by EF Education, which will field two boats with all-male and all-female crews.

The budget covers the purchase of the boat which came second in 1993/94, Intrum Justitia, another training boat, and the design and construction of two new boats for the race which starts in September 1997.

England may provide one of the boat builders and be used as a training base. Already joining the team - though no skippers are named - are Johan Salen and Magnus Olsson, who were with Intrum last time, and Mikaela von Koskull, who was with Heineken.

Sadly for home interest, the only recent British announcement was by a Southampton group called Pelagos Management, which is looking for funds, and, while the Whitbread Race seems to have no shortage of interested high-class syndicates, it has struggled to find major sponsors to mitigate its own pounds 10m-pounds 12m involvement in the race.