Two of the competitors in the Volvo China Open Guangzhou Nansha International Qualifier today took the opportunity to visit the fleet competing in the Volvo Ocean Race.

New Zealand’s Shane Kuiti and Kevin Wu from Hong Kong were VIP guests at the race stop over at nearby Nansha Marina this afternoon.

The 2017-18 edition of the Volvo Ocean Race is the longest in the four-decade history of the event and covers 45,000 nautical miles around the world, across four oceans and touches 12 landmark host cities.

Many of the world’s best sailors have dedicated many years even decades to try to win the prestigious race, which requires a diverse set of skills, absolute discipline and uncompromising teamwork.

Kuiti was particularly impressed with the skills and stamina of the sailors, all the more so after being shown the inside of one of sleek 65m vessels.

“The crews sail for 20 to 30 days and meet waves of more than 10m high,” said Kuiti, who is based in nearby Guangzhou. “They sleep for only four hours a night and the bunks are very small. And then they only have dry food mixed with water to eat, so I really admire what they do to be able to excel in their sport.

“Being a sailor is much too tough - teaching golf is much easier,” added Kuiti. “Sailors have very good mental strength and this is exactly what the golfer needs. Besides this the Volvo Ocean Race is very dangerous – they risk their lives every day they are at sea.”

Team Brunel crew member Carlo Huisman said that he had played golf just once in Dubai, and commented that compared to sailing golfers play by themselves while sailors must be part of a team.

“Sailors have the courage to explore the unknown,” said Huisman, who comes from the Netherlands. “Even though I don’t have much golf experience I would suggest that golfers should study the weather, in particular the wind.”

The practice round for the Nansha qualifier starts tomorrow at 8am and will be followed by two competition rounds over the challenging Nansha course.

The three leading players at the conclusion of play on Wednesday will win a place in the RMB 20 million Volvo China Open which will be played at the end of April.



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