At Sea. Volvo Ocean Race: Where is Brunel? Volvo Open 70 reported unmarked & bound for Australia
Brunel in Gothenburg. Photo Photo Thomas Schmidt/BYM News
Photo: Brunel in Gothenburg. Photo Photo Thomas Schmidt/BYM News - click picture to enlarge
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Thursday, 22 June 2006
Translation Jan Maes

According to a report on the Belgian website Club Racer. , on arrival at Gothenburg the Volvo Open 70 Premier Challenge , despite a contract with Brunel, did a runner within a half hour. Brunel did not know that Matt Allen, the actual owner of the V70, had come secretly to Sweden, along with a crew, in order to take the yacht away immediately after the finish.

Only the Aussies on board, together with Bindy Lockhart and Grant Wharington, knew this and after the incident they played the innocent]. This was the only time that Grant was not waiting for the boat at the arrival of a leg.

The ex-Brunel was spotted, after its hasty departure from Gothenburg, by the KRNM [dutch rescue service] close to Texel and, according to a rescue man, was only identifiable by the numbers on the sail. Afterwards, the yacht was seen in another European port, taking on provisions with no Brunel lettering anymore, and was bound for Australia.

Brunel was enraged and has now leased the open 60 of Hans Bouscholte, in order to perform the PR sailing part of the job. Charters will still run until end of July, Brunel is claiming breach of contract as they had already paid for all of this.

This looks like an act of revenge because Brunel did not want Grant Wharrington to do the offshore legs.

Jan Arie van Barneveld (CEO Brunel) is quoted as saying that they will still support sailing sport, but never again with people from the Australian Premier Challenge syndicate.
Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 June 2006 )
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