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Emirates GBR hoping to bounce back from Bermuda at ROCKWOOL Canada SailGP

by Emirates GBR SailGP Team 1 Jun 05:56 BST 1-2 June 2024
New Zealand SailGP Team helmed by Peter Burling leads the fleet during a practice session ahead of the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix in Halifax, Canada © Simon Bruty for SailGP

The Emirates Great Britain SailGP Team has hit the water in Halifax ahead of the League's first ever Canadian event. The ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix takes place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on 1 and 2 June with sell-out crowds expected to line the waterfront as the 10 teams battle it out to be crowned winner of the inaugural event. Emirates GBR is hoping to bounce back from a difficult event in Bermuda, where they struggled to get off the start line in good positions.

Emirates GBR Driver Giles Scott said: "We have had a tricky couple of events for sure. Looking back on Bermuda, it was a bit of a simple flaw - poor off the start line. The fleet is amazingly strong and If you don't get off the start line well, it's tricky to pull through the fleet of the best sailors in the world. As a team we've been working on our strategy for the start line and we're hoping to bounce back this weekend."

The Emirates GBR crew got their first experience of sailing the foiling F50 catamaran on Canadian water on Friday afternoon as all 10 SailGP teams lined up for practice racing on Halifax Harbour. Conditions were similar to those expected for the official racing on Saturday and Sunday, with gusts of about 33km/ph. Two practice races took place on Friday with Emirates GBR placing second and fourth.

Scott said: "Halifax is an amazing venue and it's great to be here for the first ever SailGP in Canada. I lived here for a few years as a child so it's always nice to come back. The city has really got on-board with the event and there's a buzzing atmosphere, so we're hoping to put on a good show for everyone this weekend."

On Thursday, Emirates GBR Grinder Nick Hutton had a different kind of practice day, as he joined ice hockey team Halifax Mooseheads for a training session ahead of an ice hockey shoot-out between all 10 SailGP Teams. Jake Todd, a homegrown star of the Halifax Mooseheads, gave Hutton some shoot-out tips before the Emirates GBR Grinder then welcomed him to the team base for a training session as a Grinder. It's safe to say Hutton is much more at home on water than on ice, with his main struggle on the ice rink being staying upright.

At the Official Press Conference on Friday, SailGP announced the results of the third key focus area of the supercharged Impact League - Climate action: innovating for a low carbon future. The focus area judged teams on projects that collaborated with their Purpose Partners and wider stakeholders to address climate change across SailGP operations.

Emirates GBR came second for their collaboration with renewable energy company Low Carbon to create an innovative Portable Renewable Energy Installation to help take the team's base off-grid at each event. Featuring 38 solar panels and two micro-wind turbines, Emirates GBR worked with SailGP Partner Aggreko to connect the system to the event grid, allocating surplus energy to other team bases and helping reduce SailGP's carbon emissions overall. This scalable initiative was shared during COP28 via a Blueprint to provide other sports teams and organisations with all the information needed to implement similar technology and inspire collective action.

The ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix | Halifax takes place on June 1-2 with the Emirates GBR team line-up consisting of Giles Scott as Driver, Hannah Mills as Strategist, Luke Parkinson as Flight Controller, Iain Jensen as Wing Trimmer, Nick Hutton and Neil Hunter as Grinders and Hannah Diamond as Reserve Sailor. Racing gets under way at 20:00 BST on both days and UK viewers can watch all the action live on ITVX and YouTube.

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