Official Supporter of TEAM ABN AMRO in the Volvo Ocean Race

Maxi Yachts Cup | September 2006

ABN AMRO ONE winner of class VOR

9 September 2006, Porto Cervo, Italy

The 2006 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup , organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, ended with a beautiful day of sailing and one last race for all divisions, in a building north westerly breeze that reached 15 knots creating a choppy sea. The Spirit of Tradition and Cruising fleets sailed on a coastal course, while the remaining divisions sailed once around the cans on a windward-leeward course.

ABN AMRO ONE was the overall winner of the class VOR, having beaten Amer Sport Too on all racing days since the start of the competition on Monday. Skipper Mike Sanderson said "I'm pleased we finished first seen the light conditions we have had in Porto Cervo this week. We have to keep in mind that our boat was designed to win the Volvo Ocean Race.”

The week-long match within the Racing division between the two competing 98-foot Maxis ended with Alfa Romeo claiming the title and Wild Oats finishing third, on equal points with Morning Glory, who finished second thanks to a series of consistent results.

Professional crew
"Seeing Mike Sanderson and his crew sailing the boat during such light conditions is a very nice experience, especially knowing what they have accomplished out there during the Volvo Ocean Race. Even though they don't have the best boat for this race they try their best to get the best out of it. Some other important thing is that they keep in mind that the guest may not be an sportive person and have helped and informed us at all times. They are professional in all aspects', said Geremia Siboni, guest sailing on board ABN AMRO ONE.

Tomorrow the day is leaving to a hospitality sailing event in Monaco, from 10 to 15 September and right after the boat goes under maintenance in Laciotta, Italy before racing the Rolex Middle Sea Race in Malta in October.


More light winds for Maxi yachts in Sardinia

6 September 2006

The crews competing in the 2006 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in Porto Cervo, Sardinia were challenged by another day of light winds. So far there has been no sign of the legendary Mistral, which can blow from the northwest at up to 45 knots.

After an initial postponement on shore, the Race Committee selected a 26 mile coastal course for the Spirit of Tradition fleet, while the other fleets tackled a 35 mile course around the Archipelago de La Maddalena, on exactly the same route as yesterday but sailed clockwise.

A VOR boat
Again ABN AMRO ONE had a long day on the water and finished the course in six hours thirty three minutes and eighteen seconds, 45 minutes earlier than Amer Sport Too.

Racing his second Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, the first in 1999 aboard Larry Ellison's Sayonara, skipper Mike Sanderson was hoping for stronger winds “It’s lovely be here sailing in a beautiful place and we are very much here with the whole idea that we've brought to Porto Cervo the boat that was designed to win the Volvo Ocean Race, which we did. If it stays under 15 knots we are not going to win any races but if it got windy we could really create a little bit of an upset. There are lots of boats here that were designed for these conditions, they are doing very well and it's great to see.”


© TEAM ABN AMRO | Rolex / Kurt Arrigo |

Light winds on second racing day

5 September 2006

A 30-mile almost complete circumnavigation of the Archipelago de La Maddalena, with a light north easterly breeze of 7-9 knots, was the feature of the second day of the 2006 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup .

It was a long day on the water under a sun of 35° C and ABN AMRO ONE completed the course in 5 hours 43 minutes 49 seconds, a little over than 45 minutes ahead Amer Sport Too, the other competitor in VOR class.

Sébastien Josse, skipper of ABN AMRO TWO, sailing on board Black Betty in this race as the runner/strategist said “The conditions for the rest of week don’t look very promising, but being out on the water is always a good thing to do.”


Good performance on first Maxi Yacht Cup day

4 September 2006
with the collaboration of Camilla Green

ABN AMRO ONE joined some of the worlds finest and fastest maxi yachts today for the first racing day of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2006 in Sardinia, Italy. Mike Sanderson arrived fresh from a creditable performance in the Trophée Claire Fontaine where he finished fourth with fellow ABN AMRO ONE crewmembers, Sidney Gavignet and Rob Greenhalgh.

ABN AMRO ONE raced alongside the rest of the IRC racing division as Black Betty is under the 24 metre minimum length, but the boat is not eligible for the overall prizes. Instead Mike and his crew raced in the Volvo Ocean Race special division, which they won today. The classes started the race with winds of 8 knots that averaged 10 knots.

Mike Sanderson said: “The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup is a great event and a great venue. The forecast for this week is not ideal for us but we are hoping to have a bit more wind towards the end of the week and the chance to let rip.”

Maxi yachts
Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2006 represents one of the largest gatherings of Maxi yachts; a fleet which if lined up end-to end would total 1,300 metres. These racing boats are generally custom-designed and built, so each one is unique.

This gives the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup an special glamour as the divisions have boats such as the veteran and reproduction Dutch Annagine, the 55 metre-long Adela, and the last year winner of the race Sidney-Hobart Wild Oats XI.


© TEAM ABN AMRO | Rolex / Kurt Arrigo |

What now, who, where and when?

14 August 2006
After the races Chicago-Mackinac and some hospitality sailing for ABN AMRO TWO in Chicago, US in June and the exhibition at the Scheepvaart Museum in Amsterdam in July and the Skandia Cowes Week, UK in the beginning of August for ABN AMRO ONE, the two boats are under maintenance for the coming two weeks.

ABN AMRO ONE next challenge will be the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in Sardinia, Italy, from 3 through 9 September.

The agenda for ABN AMRO TWO is still being finalised for the coming 12 months.

Who is where?
The sailing world is a small world and since the VOR is finished some crew members are gone but keep sailing for the TEAM or bumping into each other at every sailing event there is around the world. Check here what our sailors are doing now:

Mike Sanderson – stays in the TEAM as the skipper of both boats, leading all crew
Sébastien Josse – will be sailing with the TEAM in specific races and will race two-handed Barcelona World Race in November together with Vincent Riou, winner of 2004/05 Vendée Globe.

Tony Mutter, Dave Endean, Simon Fisher, Luke Molloy and Andrew Lewis – have joined the Swedish America’s Cup team Victory Challenge.
Scott Beavis, Nick Bice, George Peet, Sidney Gavignet, Justin Slattery, Rob Greenhalgh, and Brad Jackson – will go on sailing for the TEAM.
Stan Honey – has been working on a Disney sailing movie and working on a navigation project for the US Navy, and will eventually be sailing with the TEAM again.
Jan Dekker – has joined the Swiss America’s Cup team Alinghi.
Mark Christensen – won’t be sailing long distance races anymore.
Simeon Tienpont – will go back to school in Rotterdam to get his MBA in Business Administration in September and will eventually be sailing with the TEAM.
Gerd-Jan Poortman – has joined North Sails Benelux as an Account Manager.
Lucas Brun – he’s back to Brazil but will be also be sailing together with the TEAM again.