Popular winner in the Helly Hansen – Global Ocean Race Photographic Award

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Popular winner in the Helly Hansen – Global Ocean Race Photographic Award

The Helly Hansen – Global Ocean Race Photographic Award competition took place during the double-handed Class40 Normandy Channel Race in brutal conditions that made any attempts at video or stills photography an extra challenge. Despite the constant upwind sailing in strong breeze, many of the teams sent images into the race office with a panel of judges choosing a shot by Axel Strauss and Nicolas Boidevézi of Class40 Defi GDE – Tzu Hang as overall winner.

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Working in partnership with the 2011 Normandy Channel Race (NCR), the double-handed Class40, Global Ocean Race 2011-12 (GOR) introduced the Helly Hansen – Global Ocean Race Photographic Award as an opportunity to collect a record of images depicting the excitement and hardship of shorthanded offshore racing in Class40’s.

Throughout the NCR, conditions were predominantly upwind with winds reaching gusts of 45 knots as the fleet of 16 Class40’s raced across the English Channel, through the Solent and along the South Coast of England, across the Celtic Sea to Tusker Rock before returning to the start port of Caen via Guernsey. At the event prize giving in Caen on Saturday after five days of tough racing, GOR Race Director, Josh Hall, competing in the NCR as co-skipper to American entry, Joe Harris, on his new Akilaria RC2, Gryphon Solo 2, described the conditions as ‘the Southern Ocean in the English Channel’.

During the NCR, a panel of judges from the media and the Class40 Association assessed the images sent in by the teams and have awarded the overall prize to 50 year-old, German sailing instructor, Axel Strauss, and his 29 year-old French co-skipper and Mini 6.50 sailor, Nicolas Boidevézi, who took 6th place in the NCR with Defi GDE – Tzu Hang. The winning image shows a dolphin clear of the water, escorting the Class40 around Land’s End on the return crossing of the Celtic Sea. Strauss and Boidevézi will both receive a Hydro Power Smock Top from the GOR’s Official Clothing Sponsor, Helly Hansen.

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