A start date for the 2007 HSH Nordbank blue race was announced in Germany in September and followed up by lots of enthusiasm for the event at the Hanseboot Boat Show. The 3,600-mile race from Newport, R.I., to Hamburg, Germany, crosses the Atlantic north of the U.K. and is scheduled to get underway on June 16, 2007. The Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (NRV) is organizing the race with the support of the New York Yacht Club (NYYC).
The race organizers are estimating that there will be at least 50 entries. Twenty-three boats have already signed up. The race is open to monohulls at least 40 feet in length.
The title partner HSH Nordbank will have an entry (aptly named HSH Nordbank) skippered by Martin Friedrichs. Also competing will be Grey Goose, representing another main race partner, KÃ¶nig & Cie. The yacht KPMG, sponsored by the Deutsche Hochseesportverband Hansa (DHH), will be skippered by Inken Braunschmidt, the only female skipper to enter thus far. Braunschmidt will be competing with an all-female crew of 13.
Last May 24 yachts competed in a pre-race that was held from Kiel via Copenhagen to Hamburg as a test piece for the 2007 HSH Nordbank blue race. The white maxi UCA was the only yacht to finish the 700-nautical-mile race. The other 23 yachts were forced to drop out because of poor weather.