Amory Ross / Team Alvimedica

The Volvo Ocean race is coming back to Newport in 2018. The international sailing event drew more than 100,000 people to the city by the sea this summer.

According to state officials, the final tally was nearly 130,000 spectators, who came for the races at Fort Adams State Park.

Newport was the only North American stop on the grueling international sailing race, which spans some 40-thousand nautical miles and takes nine months to complete.

Megan Sepe

Ocean crews will sail through the night for the 11th annual Ida Lewis Distance Race. The race leaves Newport Friday.

Roughly 40 boats are expected to set sail from Fort Adams in Newport. Their course will depend on wind speeds and will take about 24-hours to complete.  Organizer Skip Helme said if the winds are strong enough, the boats may travel as far as Montauk Long Island.

John Bender / RIPR

The first man to sail non-stop around the world by himself (in 1968) is in Newport this week preparing for the Transatlantic Ocean Race, which kicks off this weekend.

Now at age 76, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston is skippering is one of nearly 40 teams participating in the 3,000 nautical mile race from Newport to Cornwall England. He sat down with Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender on his boat in Newport harbor to talk about his life-long career in sailing.

More than forty sailboats are getting ready to compete in the historic Transatlantic Ocean Race in Newport. The official start of the race is this weekend.

The race stretches from Newport to South Cornwall, the southernmost point in England. The event is considered a classic competition, the first Transatlantic Race set off from Newport in 1866.

This year’s competitors include Sir Robert Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo around the world without stopping. At 76, Knox-Johnston says he thinks he’s got a good shot at success thanks to a strong team.

Ainhoa Sanchez / Volvo Ocean Race

The six teams competing in the international Volvo Ocean Race departed Newport Sunday.It's the last time the sailors will see land until they reach Lisbon, Portugal.

Thousands of people turned up to Fort Adams in Newport, Sunday to see the crews off.  The City by the Sea has played host to the Volvo Ocean Race for the last week and a half.  It’s the only stopover city in the U.S. and North America.

Festivities in Newport surrounding the Volvo Ocean Race are not the only significant sailing activities in Rhode Island waters on Saturday.

Roger Williams University in Bristol will cut the ribbon on its new $3 million sailing center in conjunction with the 11th Annual Captain’s Cup, a regatta featuring current RWU sailors, alumni sailors and their parents.

Kristi Wilson / Team Alvimedica

The international sailing world is on display in Newport, as teams from the Volvo Ocean Race make their only North American stop in the City by the Sea. The next week of events is expected to generate millions of dollars and draw thousands of tourists.

Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender headed down to Newport to see what all the fuss is about.

In the dead of night on Thursday, a chilly air settled over Fort Adams State Park. A crowd of 7,000 excited spectators thronged the lawn, waiting to catch a glimpse of the boats arriving in the Volvo Ocean Race.

Amory Ross / Team Alvimedica

The six sailing teams in the Volvo Ocean Race are speeding closer to Newport, where they’re expected to dock later this week. The race is one of the biggest in the sailing world, covering some 40-thousand nautical miles. It takes nine months to complete. Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender caught up with a sailor on one of the boats. Nick Dana hails from Newport, at 29,  he’s one of the youngest crew members for Team Alvimedica. Dana spoke by a satellite phone as the team heads from Brazil towards the east coast.

Volvo Ocean Race

The Volvo Ocean race is expected to arrive in Newport this week.  The City by the Sea is the race’s only stopover in the U.S.


Sailing fans consider this the Super Bowl of international ocean sailboat racing. Held about once every four years, the international race kicks off in Spain and ends in Sweden.  It takes about nine months to complete. Seven teams are competing this year.

Race commentator Andy Green said the boats are on their way following, after a stop in Brazil.

Catherine Welch / RIPR

We’re launching our series One Square Mile and this time we’re focused on Narragansett Bay. The bay plays an enormous role in making Rhode Island a sailing mecca.

Sail Newport’s Executive Director Brad Read hops on one of the organization’s sailboats and starts pulling the line connected to the main sail. “You picked a perfect day, you couldn’t have asked for a dryer more perfect wind, beautiful blue sky,” said Read. “And you’re here at Sail Newport about to sail on one of our J-22’s.”


The Newport Regatta kicks off Friday with 200 – 250 sailboats racing off the Rhode Island coast. They’ll be out just north of the Pell Bridge, near the Newport Harbor and out farther in the ocean.

Sail Newport is hosting the event. Its executive director Brad Read said one of the best places to watch the action is on the northern lawn at Ft. Adams.

Bradley Campbell / RIPR

Sailing officials from around the globe are in Newport this week getting ready for the next Volvo Ocean Race. The race starts in October of 2014 and makes a stop in Newport in May of 2015. This will be the only North American stop. Discover Newport CEO Evan Smith said the race will deliver exposure that will pay off for years to come.

Bradley Campbell / RIPR

Thursday is an especially sweet day for Sail Newport. It’s not only celebrating the Oracle Team USA win over New Zealand for the America’s Cup, but today is also Sail Newport’s 30th anniversary.

The public sailing center was formed almost immediately after America lost the cup to Australia in the waters off Newport. Sail Newport Executive Director Brad Read couldn’t be more thrilled with the timing of the America’s Cup win.

Ted Hood, the internationally-known yachtsman who skippered the 1974 America’s Cup winner and whose hand-weaved custom sails were used on every Cup winning boat from 1958 to 1977, has died. He was 86.

A native of Beverly, Massachusetts on Boston’s North Shore, Hood started his sail-making company in the back of a tavern in Marblehead, Mass., a sailing mecca. He won an America’s Cup in 1974 as skipper aboard the boat Courageous.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Feb 6, 2013

A proposal to legalize recreational marijuana and then tax it. Newport becomes a stop on an around-the-world sailing race.  These stories and more on the RIPR Morning News Podcast.

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