Dongfeng Race Team partners with apparel maker Zhik
Published: Wednesday, 10 May 2017
The innovative sailing apparel specialist, Zhik, has been appointed as official technical clothing partner to Dongfeng Race Team in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18.
(Photos: Jen Edney / Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng Race Team)
Finishing third in the 2014-15 edition of the race, Dongfeng Race Team has an objective to sail to the best of the team's ability and compete at the highest level.
The next edition of the race will see the team take on three times as many Southern Ocean miles as in the previous edition and encounter the most extreme weather conditions known to mankind.
Charles Caudrelier, skipper of Dongfeng Race Team, said: "The Volvo Ocean Race is hugely demanding from a human point of view, and the welfare of my crew is paramount. Having the right technical clothing is as race-critical as having the right food.”
“As an elite sailing team, we are always looking to get the extra edge on our competitors. We share the same goal with Zhik to optimise everything we do. Detail is key in this race and if we succeed in being innovative together, it could make us even more competitive on the water. Zhik can help us to perform at our peak day and night, week after week."
Crewmembers such as Australian-British sailor and bowman on board Dongfeng, Jack Bouttell, will rely on Zhik's design technology and fabric to help them operate and perform at the highest level.
Bouttell has been the lead crew in working with Zhik's designers to help them produce offshore gear that does the job he and his fellow Dongfeng Race Team sailors need. "It has been a fascinating process to test out new foul weather gear and give them feedback from the front of the boat.”
As in the previous race, Dongfeng Race Team is committed to promoting and developing the sport of offshore sailing in China and will have three Chinese sailors in the team, alongside new additions such as Carolijn Brouwer (NED) and Marie Riou (FRA).
David Crow, Zhik CEO, commented: "The team at Zhik is thrilled to announce the partnership with Dongfeng Race Team which is doing so much to develop sailing in China, as well as embracing new rules to encourage female sailors to take part in the world's premier crewed offshore race. Our world class, high-tech Isotak gear is designed to push the boundaries of waterproof and breathable protection, enabling our race partners to consistently perform at their best in their quest to win."
Bart Milczarczyk, Zhik's global head of design, added: "The collaboration with Dongfeng Race Team is a very exciting partnership. Zhik is driven by winning and performance, and we strive to produce the best and most groundbreaking apparel and footwear. The harsh demands that the team will have to endure and the sailors' feedback is invaluable. It enables us at Zhik to continually innovate and redefine the future of sailing apparel for professional and leisure sailors across the world."