It might not appear obvious at first, but sailing a Volvo Open 65 boat around the world can be helped by much of the same knowledge used in the planning and operation of any wind power plant. It’s all about the data and how it’s interpreted.
Team Vestas Wind’s Wouter Verbraak has competed in the Volvo Ocean Race twice, in the America’s Cup, in the 2011 Barcelona World Race and all world major regattas.
As the Team’s navigator, Verbraak shows great interest in weather data which helps him, the skipper and the rest of the team better understand the wind patterns and conditions throughout the race, and plan the most optimal route on each Leg.
Thanks to “Firestorm”, Vestas’ supercomputer powered by IBM, as well as a solid collaboration with Vestas’ Plant Forecasting team, we are able to deliver useful detailed weather reports to Wouter and the team ahead of each leg start.
According to Wouter, Vestas' big data capabilities and superior knowledge of the wind are quite extraordinary:
“The level of sophistication of tools available from Vestas far exceeds anything I have had at my disposal previously, and I very much appreciate that Vestas knows exactly what the team needs and that you can deliver it”, Wouter says and continues “through our cooperation, it feels like Christmas!”
Navigator Wouter Verbraak discusses wind data for the Leg to Cape Town with Vestas' Thomas Alsbirk
This is not the first time Vestas’ Forecasting capabilities have been used to further our progress in a race. By mapping out wind data across the world’s most impoverished regions, Vestas has joined the race against energy poverty through Wind for Prosperity.
Discover more about why the Volvo Ocean Race is more than a boat race around the world, and support Wouter and Vestas colleagues in a Race we must win. #Jointherace today!