Published: Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Italian boatyard Persico Marine has won the prestigious contract to construct new one-design Volvo Ocean 65s for the 2017-2018 edition of the Volvo Ocean Race.

Persico Marine Set To Construct Volvo Ocean 65s

(Photo: Brian Carlin / Team Vestas Wind / Volvo Ocean Race)

The Bergamo-based company was part of the consortium that built the first seven Volvo Ocean 65 one-design boats that contested the 12th edition finishing in June this year.

Persico also made global media headlines when it carried out the complete rebuild of the shattered Team Vestas Wind boat in just four-and-a-half months after the crew struck a reef in the Indian Ocean during Leg 2 of the race.

“When Vestas Wind left our yard to re-join the race in Lisbon, some of my team were almost in tears,” says Persico Marine Managing Director Marcello Persico. “It was an amazing challenge and we were so proud to complete it. As you can imagine, we’re very proud now to be given this opportunity to work so closely with the race again for the next edition. We feel we are part of the Volvo Ocean Race family.”

All seven Volvo Ocean 65s will race again in the next edition from October 2017 after an upgrade and a major re-fit. More of the identical boats built by Persico will join them for the 13th edition depending on demand from future teams.

Persico Marine Set To Construct Volvo Ocean 65s 1

(Photo: Mark Somerville/Persico Marine)

“The main component is the hull, which Persico provided very efficiently in the last race as part of the consortium of builders,” says Volvo Ocean Race COO Tom Touber. “But also Persico did an outstanding job taking the lead in the rebuild of Vestas Wind and it confirmed to us how well they could do the job they’re now taking on.”

Touber and Persico underlined that they did not anticipate problems ensuring any new boats built matched the strict one-design specification of the existing seven.

“The moulds and jigs will be exactly the same as used in the production of the other Volvo Ocean 65 boats,” says Touber. “If any part is constructed differently, it will not fit.”

A major re-fit for the entire fleet is organised for the end of 2016, when all boats will be returned to The Boatyard of the Volvo Ocean Race, stripped down, re-measured, and upgraded. This will also help ensure the strict one-design dimensions of the boats.

Persico Marine Set To Construct Volvo Ocean 65s 2

(Photo: Vanessa Zanni / Persico Marine)

News of Persico’s deal is announced on the 42nd anniversary of the first running of the event, which began as the Whitbread Round the World Race in 1973.