Please select your home edition
Typhoon 2021 - FOOTER

Plymouth set to entertain sold out crowds for this weekend's Great Britain Sail Grand Prix

by SailGP 17 Jul 07:27 BST 17-18 July 2021
Great Britain SailGP Team driven by Paul Goodison in action going past the lighthouse during a practice session ahead of Great Britain SailGP, Event 3, Season 2 in Plymouth © Jon Buckle for SailGP

Plymouth Sound, the natural amphitheater of Britain's Ocean City, is set for the world's most exciting racing on water as the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix - the third event of SailGP Season 2 - takes place this weekend.

It is being billed as a potentially crucial week in the global championship - with the leaderboard incredibly tight - as the eight national teams approach the third event of the season. Only two points separate the top three SailGP teams - Spain, Great Britain, and Japan.

The British team - with interim driver and Olympic champion Paul Goodison at the wheel - is currently in second place going into its home event. The British are just behind the Spain SailGP Team led by driver Phil Robertson - the focus of the latest SailGP: 'Racing on the Edge' episode - who against all odds sit atop the leaderboard.

Robertson said: "We've got to a level now where we are comfortable on the boat, and the young guys on the team are coming up with maneuvers and creative solutions which is what we want to see.

We've just got to keep consistent and keep chipping away and making the right calls in every race. We haven't done anything special but the beauty of our team is we're young, we're keen and we've got no egos. That's dangerous."

Looking to maintain momentum from the previous event in Taranto, Italy, will be Nathan Outteridge and the Japan SailGP Team who were crowned the Italy Sail Grand Prix Champions in light winds and reduced three-sailor crews. With the potential for similar light winds this weekend, Outteridge and his team have got their eyes on capitalizing on the conditions to take the top position again.

The pressure will be on for the home team. The British team is targeting significant improvement from Italy where they finished sixth. Currently in second place on the overall leaderboard, the Great Britain SailGP Team - with interim driver and Olympic champion Paul Goodison at the wheel - hopes the support of the home crowd will propel them up the leaderboard and back into first place, in time for Sir Ben Ainslie's return to the driver's seat at Aarhus in Denmark on August 20-21.

Goodison said: "It's fantastic to be back out on English waters - it's been a while since I've sailed here. I don't think these guys were expecting the nice conditions here, but we are hoping for more wind this weekend. It's a brilliant venue, a natural amphitheater, and the crowds are going to be in for a real treat.

"Is it coming home? Let's hope so! I'm really excited and looking forward to the racing, and if it all goes our way I'm sure we will be up there."

Jimmy Spithill's United States SailGP Team is looking to make a strong comeback going into this third event, after they suffered a series of heart-wrenching crashes in both Bermuda, and Taranto.

Currently sitting in the middle of the board is the New Zealand SailGP Team. With a fleet win in Italy, interim driver Arnaud Psarofaghis goes into his second event of the season looking to build on that momentum, while Peter Burling and Blair Tuke prepare to defend their Olympic title at the upcoming Olympic games in Tokyo.

The Australians led by Tom Slingsby, and the Danish team driven by Nicolai Sehested, look to make serious headway in the climb to the top of the leaderboard, each looking for their first event win in the first half of SailGP Season 2.

Ahead of the racing kicking-off, earlier in the week SailGP announced the Impact League, a world-first integrated second leaderboard created for all eight international teams - one for sport and one for purpose - where they are rewarded for the positive actions they make to reduce their overall carbon footprint and help accelerate inclusivity in sailing.

Throughout the week, building up to the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix in Plymouth, the Race For The Future initiatives have been more evident than ever. Activity taking place in Plymouth has included an Adopt-a-Club program with eight local sailing clubs, an Inspire Careers and Racing community engagement program, STEM Crew live lessons with the Ocean Conservation Trust and much more. All eight teams are ultimately racing for purpose, as well as sport.

All eight teams launched on Plymouth Sound on Thursday, July 15 and Friday July 16 for official practice racing, during which Billy Besson's France SailGP Team enjoyed a special guest onboard its F50 catamaran when Musto ambassador Zara Tindall MBE joined them for a sail.

On the final day of preparation today, training was halted due to an unexpected visitor, when a whale was sighted in the vicinity of the racecourse. SailGP's Marine Mammal Plan is put in place to protect marine mammals in the cities where it races and, on a sighting by the marine mammal officers, training or racing is halted, until the mammal has time to move away from the race area.

With stunning conditions of sunshine and mid-20s degrees Celsius expected over the weekend, over 1,000 boats have registered to watch the drama unfold on the water. The ticketed, official spectator area on the Plymouth Hoe is sold out for both days, adhering to government guidelines and SailGP's own Covid-Safe plan, but boat owners are still invited to take their vessels out to watch the racing and can register via SailGP's Bring Your Own Boat Program. By registering, fans will receive all of the racecourse information and a VHF channel to listen to for all the latest updates.

Fans unable to attend can watch all the action broadcast live in 175 territories, including via SKY Sports in the UK and Ireland as well as live on YouTube. The award-winning SailGP APP - available in the App Store and Google Play - gives the ultimate viewing experience with full customization, access to data, and live commentary.

The Great Britain Sail Grand Prix will comprise two days of racing with five fleet races followed by a podium race, with the top three boats in the ultimate showdown to decide the winner on Sunday, July 18. As an added incentive, additional prize money will be awarded to the podiums at each event in addition to the $1 million up for grabs at the Grand Final in San Francisco in March 2022.

Related Articles

Canada completes line-up for SailGP Season 3
Owned by innovative businessman and investment entrepreneur and lifelong sailor, Fred Pye SailGP has announced that the line-up for Season 3 - starting May 2022 - will be further enhanced with the addition of Canada joining the global league for Season 3. Posted on 20 Oct
Champion crowned winner of eSailGP Championship
Great Britain's VIT Farley claims victory in winner-takes-all eSailGP Grand Final eSailGP Season 2's virtual high-speed action culminated on Friday with eight super-pumped qualifying players vying for the coveted title of 2021 eSailGP Champion. Posted on 19 Oct
Relive the best bits from Spain Sail Grand Prix!
A fantastic weekend in Cadiz for Australia It was a fantastic weekend in Cadiz for Australia, who won the Spain Sail Grand Prix and returned to the top of the SailGP Season Championship with only two events remaining! Posted on 16 Oct
Spain Sail Grand Prix overall
Double devastation on final day The home team went from hero to zero when a capsize ahead of the final day of racing in Cádiz, Andalusia, took the Spanish team out of contention for the Spain Sail Grand Prix. Posted on 10 Oct
Spain Sail Grand Prix day 1
Aussies lead the charge as the largest crowds to date watch on With the largest crowds to attend a SailGP event to-date, the first ever Spain Sail Grand Prix got off to a flying start. In scenes reminiscent of a football match, fans roared from the shorelines and from the 1,400 boats that turned out. Posted on 9 Oct
Spanish team favorites to win Sail Grand Prix
Home team sets its sights on finishing on top of the podium With the stage set for the first ever Spain Sail Grand Prix, the port city of Cádiz is buzzing with excitement as the home team sets its sights on finishing on top of the podium. Posted on 9 Oct
Take the 'plastic promise' for race weekend
Japan SailGP Team urges Cádiz residents to tackle plastic pollution The Japan SailGP Team is calling on Cádiz residents to take the 'plastic promise' to tackle plastic pollution during this weekend's SailGP race, as it competes for further sailing glory. Posted on 8 Oct
CDP joins SailGP's Race for the Future
Championing a world powered by nature through environmental disclosure The partnership aims to inspire and support cities and business decision-makers across the globe to drive impact within the sports industry, the associated industries that serve it and beyond. Posted on 8 Oct
SailGP: US WASZP Champ to race aboard USSailGP
US Foiling champ to take womens slot in expanded crew for SailGP Cadiz In preparation for racing in Cadiz, the team officially welcomed athlete CJ Perez to her first SailGP event where this weekend she will be one of six female athletes to ever race onboard the F50 foiling platform. Posted on 7 Oct
Women's Pathway Program athletes to race in SailGP
League introduces new six-athlete configuration for upcoming Spain Sail Grand Prix SailGP's road to creating a more inclusive championship reaches another milestone this weekend at the Spain Sail Grand Prix taking place in Cádiz-Andalusia. Posted on 7 Oct