The Volvo Ocean Race
We arrived in Sandhamn at 10 p.m. on June 15th. It was perfect timing because the Volvo Ocean Race boats were arriving around 11 p.m. The Volvo Ocean Race, formally known as the Whitbread “Around the World Race,” began in Alicante on October 11th 2008 and ends in St. Petersburg on June 25th 2009. Sorcerer II was docked in a perfect location to watch the boats come into the finish line. I was not very familiar with the Volvo Ocean Race, but now I know these people are true sailors and adventure seekers (I might also add a bit crazy as you sort of have to be in order to do such a race!).
On June 17th Dr. Venter and Dr. Norrby were offered the opportunity to sail on the PUMA boat named Il Mostro and skippered by Ken Read for the Sandhamn to Stockholm race. Sorcerer II along with hundreds of other boats watched the start of the race and then for the next three hours followed the boats into Stockholm.
It was really exciting to motor sail into Stockholm in the midst of all the celebration around the race. Karolina was also really excited to be back in her home city and have the opportunity to show off her city (more on that later). The crew docked the boat at the Volvo Race Village, and we attended a special reception for the race boats at the Royal Place of Stockholm. The King of Sweden, Carl XVI Gustaf spoke and welcomed the teams to Stockholm, and afterwards Dr. Venter, Dr. Norrby and members of the crew met with the King and crew members from the race boats. The reception was followed by a delicious dinner organized by Dr. Norrby at an inn that dates from the 1700’s. Today also happened to be my birthday, and it will be remembered for many reasons!