The Volvo Ocean Race is a grueling 45,000 nauticle race around the world, thats nearly a double circum navigation of the globe. 66 of the world's top sailors will cross 4 oceans, stop in 12 cities over 6 contients on 65-foot high-tech sailing boats. The Ocean Race represents years of dedication, skill and obsession to th sport but it also raises another serious concern for the health of our planet.
The Ocean Race started on September 8th, 1973 where 17 boats of various shapes and sizes took to the ocean heading for Cape Town, South Africa, Sydney and Rio de Jeneiro before heading back to Portsmouth. At the time, cabins were stocked full of fine wine, fresh meat and on-board cooks, with the advanced technology and heightened passion for competition, the ultra-strong and light weight boats of the 21st century are stripped of all luxuries and replaced with GPS systems, rehydrated powdered food and protein bars.
These boats sail in the roughest seas in the most remote locations. This gives scientists an opportunity to learn more about our oceans. The Ocean Race Sailors aboard 'Turn the Tide on Plastic' and the 'took 75 water samples and analysed them for plastic traces. Out of these samples, 96% had plastic in the water. One sample location was taken at 'Point Nemo' the most remote location on earth 1,670 nautical miles from any human; the closest people to this point were on the international space station above and this sample came back positive for microplastics.
The South Sea in China had the highest levels of microplastics. With over 350 particles of plastic per meter cubed, it topped the charts for the most polluted ocean on the planet. On the other hand, the cleanest oceans were found to be the Irish Sea and the South Atlantic Ocean.
Watch the short video to learn more about micro plastics.
As a tribute to the race, Volvo have released a special edition of the Volvo V90 Cross-Country. The unique design of the V90 Ocean Race is inspired by the race boats themselves, with carbon fibre inlays, orange trim details and the exclusive 'Ocean Race' badge. Packed with practical design features and accessories; the Ocean Race the most adventurous estate choice.
What sets the Ocean Race apart from any other estate car is the attention to sustainability towards the materials used. The seats and textile floor mats are all made from ECONYL®; a material composed of salvaged fishing nets that are recycled and repurposed for use inside the luxurious interior, as well as elements under the wheel arches and in the load compartment.
For the first 3,000 V90 Ocean Race cars sold, Volvo donated € 100 per car to go towards the 'Volvo Ocean Race’s Science Program' concerning ocean plastics, bringing the total investment to € 300,000.