Emirates Team New Zealand settles into Valencia and prepares for the summer
Grant DaltonManaging Director of Emirates Team New Zealand
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It’s difficult to believe that only 10 months ago we were “camping” on this site as we competed in the Louis Vuitton Act 7 regatta. We were jammed together in portable offices, eating in the open and chef Peter Yeo and his assistant Dylan McCombe produced daily miracles from the portable “Emireats” kitchen. The shore crew working out of two workshops built into 40ft shipping containers.
It was difficult to imagine then that in 10 months a fully operational base would be here from which the team will mount its assault on first the Louis Vuitton Cup and then the America’s Cup.
We now have a very good base. There’s room enough for all departments to operate efficiently. It’s big (65m by 35m and 3 storeys high) but there are no frills anywhere. It is strictly a utilitarian structure designed solely to allow the team to operate efficiently.
Work on the new base started in late July. The team’s task force moved into the shell in October to start the fit out and since then our project manager Craig Stokes has been hard at it
Today we are only a few days behind on the schedule we set 18 months ago when we started planning the base construction and the team’s move to Valencia.
That’s a tribute to the construction team, Architectus and Beca Carter the team’s architects and engineers, the companies who supplied the materials and expertise and Peters and May and Maersk Line who got everything from Auckland to Valencia.
Today our base is nearing completion. The offices are finished and occupied and the kitchen is nearing completion. The hospitality area is well advanced and will be in operation in time for the regatta next month.
The team is indebted to the people and companies which have made this possible.
In the boat shed, shore and sailing crews are readying NZL 82 and NZL 84 to go sailing. They will be in the water early next week and the sailing programme will start immediately. We have a lot of work to do between now and May 11 when racing in Louis Vuitton Act 10 starts. The team can look forward to long days as we shake down the yachts. A day off will be a luxury.
We are committed to the job we undertook in 2003.