About the Extreme Sailing Series™ 2017

2017 heralds the 10th year of this award-winning elite level stadium racing circuit that visits eight iconic venues: A world tour spanning three continents. Once again, another full eight-team grid, representing seven nations will line up for the season, ready to do battle for the ultimate accolade of becoming the 2017 Extreme Sailing Series Champions.

The Extreme Sailing Series continues to maintain the highest level of sporting integrity, in the same award-winning format, across a mix of iconic cities, established sailing venues, and new markets of strong commercial value to stakeholders.

Executive Chairman of OC Sport, Mark Turner: “The Series is now firmly established in the arena of world class professional sailing, and we have built that reputation by continually attracting some of the very best sailors in the world, supported by global brands, in iconic and attractive venues – competing annually and on a global scale.”

Mark Cameron, Jaguar Land Rover Global Brand Experience Director commented: “Racing in the Extreme Sailing Series is fast and furious and watching some of the best sailors in the world battling it out in such challenging environments makes for a fantastic spectacle.”

The competition on the water is always fierce, action-packed and down to the wire, and there’s a reason for that. On the grid – 2017 continues with a competitive line-up in including America’s Cup winners, heroes of multiple Olympic Games, World Champions and round the world sailors who will go head to head on a stadium racecourse that has a reputation as one of the toughest in professional inshore sailing.

2017 Extreme Sailing Series Act Locations

Muscat, Oman: 8 March – 11 March 2017

Proclaimed as one of the sailors’ favourite venues, in a country with a rich maritime heritage, the open waters off the coast of Muscat provide almost guaranteed hot sunny weather, a perfect sea breeze and a great expanse of open water, on which the GC32s can test their speed. The Series returns to the Middle Eastern venue for what will be the seventh consecutive year and the Act will see a mixture of the signature Stadium Racing along with coastal racing set against the stunning and dramatic backdrop of Muscat’s Old Town.

The city, which lies along the Gulf of Oman on the Arabian Sea, has become a high-end holiday scene with a vibrant economy. Notable landmarks include the Grand Mosque, the Royal Opera House and the Oman National Museum, as well as the more traditional sights, including the Muttrah Souq, one of the oldest traditional bazaars in the Arab world.

Qingdao, China: 28 April – 1 May 2017

Another classic venue featured on the 2017 circuit is Qingdao. For the seventh consecutive year, the fleet of GC32’s will race in China’s Olympic sailing city in the Shandong Province. Known for its notorious nature, there is no telling what weather conditions the fleet will face as they head out to battle each day, with conditions ranging from gales, flat calms, huge waves and even fog. Northerly winds funnels between the huge skyscrapers, surprising the sailors with unexpected gusts that can come out of nowhere and are strong enough to capsize the boats.

Where is the best place to watch?
Fushan Bay, which was home to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Village, provides the site for the public Race Village, ensuring that the Olympic legacy is kept alive. There are opportunities here for the fleet to race both outside the breakwater of the Bay, in the open water, and inside the breakwater, in the classic Stadium Racing format, testing the world-class teams in a range of skills.

The largest city in China’s eastern Shandong province boasts a mixture of the old and new. The modern city has preserved its 20th century history, while also boasting an impressive downtown skyline and vibrant economy, meaning it offers plenty of culture for tourists to soak up. Visitors can enjoy the diverse food scene and should also make sure to take a trip to the Olympic museum.

Madeira Islands, Portugal: 29 June – 2 July 2017

After a successful debut Act in 2017, Marina Funchal, on the south coast of Madeira Island’s capital, Funchal, will see a return visit from the fleet of GC32s. With a variety of wind conditions, including some extremely testing lighter days, the teams are pushed to their tactical limits in this venue, which proved to be an ideal location for the Global-circuit.

Where is the best place to watch?

Marina Funchal, which hosts the public Race Village, is considered to be one of the most spectacular harbour destinations in the world and has been a popular cruise liner destination for over 100 years, with up to 75 liners visiting per month. Bursting with culture, history and interesting architecture, there is plenty to see and do in Funchal, providing the perfect exploring ground for visitors.

Europe: 20 July – 23 July 2017

​With seven iconic venues announced for the 2017 season, the European host city for the fourth Act is yet to be revealed.

Hamburg, Germany: 10 August – 13 August 2017

The Series returns to Hamburg for the third time. The arena provides a combination of strong tides, shifty wind conditions and passing traffic that really keeps to the sailors on their toes. The Hamburg arena is over 800 years old and is one of the Extreme Sailing Series’ smallest, despite the port being the second largest in Europe, which means tight turns and nifty overtakes, making for a thrilling viewing experience.

Where is the best place to watch?

Racing is set against the impressive industrial backdrop of the newly regenerated HafenCity area on the River Elbe and fans can take a seat in front of the Unilever building to get the best view of the action.

You can explore Hamburg’s historical harbour by taking a boat tour, strolling along the waterfront or enjoying the excellent German cuisine. Over 2,300 bridges cross the many streams, rivers and canals that run through the city – more than London, Amsterdam and Venice combined.

Cardigff, UK: 25 August – 28 August 2017

For the sixth consecutive year, the Extreme Sailing Series will return to Cardiff Bay, Europe’s largest waterfront development, over the Bank Holiday weekend. The enclosed bay provides the ideal Stadium Racing venue for spectators to get up-close and personal with the racing from all sides.

Where is the best place to watch?

The public Race Village is located by the Norwegian Church and provides the perfect viewing spot, along with a whole host of shoreside entertainment. The city is also full of surprises for visitors, with must-see sites such as the slate and steel structure of The Millennium Centre, situated within the Bay, as well as the world-renowned art collection in the National Museum. Cardiff is Wales’ largest city and also its capital, making it the chief commercial centre, and the base for most national cultural and sporting institutions, the Welsh national media, and the seat of the National Assembly for Wales.

San Diego, USA: 19 October – 22 October 2017

ith the racing taking place just five metres from the shore of Harbor Island, the man-made peninsula located close to Downtown San Diego, the Series looks set to make a show-stopping return to the Americas for the penultimate Act. Enjoying a very temperate climate, the Californian city of San Diego sees consistent breezes, making it a favourite sailing spot for California and the rest of the west coast.

The eighth-largest city in the US, San Diego is known for its beautiful weather and pristine beaches as well its plethora of entertainment. Take in the ocean views at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, try out the outstanding Mexican food, visit one of the many great surf spots, or take a trip to one of the numerous museums, zoos or theme parks.

Find out more about the event here: sandiegoextremesailing.com

Los Cabos, Mexico: 30 November – 3 December 2017

For the first time ever the Series will head to Mexico and Los Cabos for the grand finale of the 2017 season. Located at the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula, the venue is known as ‘Land’s End’. Lying in-between the areas that receive the major weather systems, Baja is blessed with beautiful weather almost all year round, with the southern tip of Baja being the warmest but cooled by the breezes coming from the Pacific Ocean.

Los Cabos, Mexico’s fastest growing resort, boasts miles of deserted beaches along with numerous attractions including whale watching, hand-gliding, snorkeling, antiquing, golf and fishing. Known as the ‘dual destination’ due to its to dramatically distinct personas, tranquil San Jose del Cabo has the vibe of an authentic Mexican town while Cabos San Lucas is far the opposite as a bustling party town.