This edition of the Volvo Ocean Race is the 12th running of the 40-year-old event, which started in 1973 as the Whitbread Round the World Race.
The race started on October 4, 2014, day of the first In-Port Race in Alicante, Spain, and will finish with one last In-Port Race on June 27, 2015 in Gothenburg, the Swedish home of Volvo.
The 38,739-nautical mile route will include stopovers in Cape Town (South Africa), Abu Dhabi (UAE), Sanya (China), Auckland (New Zealand), Itajaí (Brazil), Newport (Rhode Island, US), Lisbon (Portugal) and Lorient (France). A 24-hour pit-stop in The Hague is scheduled between France and Sweden.
This and the next edition will be contested in a new high-performance boat, the Volvo Ocean 65, designed by Farr Yacht Design in the United States and built by a consortium of boatyards in the United Kingdom, France, Italy and Switzerland.
Seven teams have been announced for the 12th edition. The all-female Team SCA are the first all-women's team to compete in the race since 2001-02. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing are once again skippered by Britain's twice Olympic silver medallist Ian Walker. Dongfeng Race Team come from China and are backed by Dongfeng Commercial Vehicle. Team Brunel from the Netherlands are skippered by race veteran Bouwe Bekking. Team Alvimedica with a double flag (Turkey/USA) will be headed by Rhode Island's Charlie Enright. A Spanish team was announced in June and is backed by insurance giant MAPFRE. Denmark's Team Vestas was the final boat to be announced in August. Chris Nicholson will be skipper.