OC Sport, the international sports management company that specialises in professional sailing and outdoor sports, celebrated its biggest ever team management success this weekend with the victory of Dongfeng Race Team in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race.
The Chinese flagged team, sponsored by the car and truck manufacturer Dongfeng Motor Corporation, clinched the Volvo Ocean Race title on Sunday after an exciting and tense three-way sail-off for overall victory during the final leg from Gothenburg to The Hague.
Dongfeng Race Team was created and managed by OC Sport in 2013 to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 when it finished third overall. This time, under the same skipper – Charles Caudrelier of France – and still under OC Sport management led by Bruno Dubois, it has achieved its goal of winning what is regarded as the pinnacle of fully-crewed offshore ocean racing.
For OC Sport this is the company’s single biggest success in the management of professional fully-crewed ocean racing campaigns and ranks alongside its founding landmark achievements in sailing when managing the stellar career of Dame Ellen MacArthur.
Dubois, the Team Director, underlined that the campaign has always been about more than winning the Volvo Ocean Race trophy. From the outset Dongfeng Race Team has been committed to helping to develop the sport of sailing in China and it has selected and trained a core group of three Chinese sailors, two of whom took part in this race. Across the team as a whole there were 10 Chinese staff working in communications and boat maintenance and preparation, alongside an international group of male and female sailors from seven nations.
“We learnt from what we achieved in 2013 and have used that knowledge and expertise to climb to the top of the podium,” said Dubois.
“We believe and hope that the success of Dongfeng Race Team will help establish sailing as a popular sport in China and look forward to seeing the sailors we have trained – among them Chen Jinhao (Horace), Yang Jiru (Wolf) and Xue Liu (Black) – going forward to new and successful projects,” he said.
Rémi Duchemin, a co-chief executive of OC Sport, said that this campaign has contributed significantly to increasing Dongfeng’s global profile.
“I would like to pay tribute to Dongfeng Motor Corporation who have put their trust in us since 2013 to deliver not only a successful sporting sponsorship but a commercially successful one too. Senior executives at Dongfeng understood that building success at this level would take time and their support and commitment has been unwavering.”
OC Sport which was founded in Cowes in the UK in 1998 and is now owned by the French media conglomerate, the Telegramme Group, has the biggest portfolio of professional sailing events in global sports management. These include the Extreme Sailing Series™ which it created and manages, the four-yearly The Transat, the four-yearly Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe, the annual Solitaire URGO Le Figaro and the Transat AG2R La Mondiale.
In its outdoor events portfolio, the company runs the expanding Haute Route amateur cycling series which features 12 different events across Europe and in North America. It also manages the Harmony Geneva Marathon for Unicef and the Nice-Cannes Marathon, plus triathlons and endurance mountain running events under the UTMB brand including Gaoligong by UTMB and Oman by UTMB.
The next big event on OC Sport’s sailing agenda is the Route du Rhum -Destination Guadeloupe professional solo transatlantic race which sets sail from St Malo for Pointe-a-Pitre in Guadeloupe on November 4th. The 40th anniversary of this classic will feature a record entry of 122 skippers in four classes.
Hervé Favre, co-chief executive of OC Sport with responsibility for sailing, said the success of Dongfeng Race Team was evidence that the company leads the way in both event and team management in global professional sailing.
“We are at the forefront in both disciplines,” said Favre, “and we look forward to new and exciting projects, both as team managers and event creators and managers. Dongfeng Race Team had all the tools they needed to achieve ultimate success and our congratulations go to Bruno, Charles and the whole team.”
Source – Nicola Dawson – OC Sport