SailGP on the Med and in Your Hand

Team France in Marseille
Appropriately, Team France, skippered by Billy Besson, was first on the water in Marseille, on September 15.
© 2019 SailGP

The SailGP season will wrap up this weekend in scenic (that’s an understatement) port of Marseille on the French Riviera. Can’t be there? Neither can we. But your options, like ours, abound.

Virtual Regatta

Not the least of opportunities for armchair-sailor engagement is Virtual Regatta. eSailGP will even count as a regatta in the eSailing World Championship. Yes, computer gaming has evolved into serious business. For eSailGP, the eF50s are a digital representation of SailGP’s 50-ft foiling catamarans. The press release promises that they’ll “match the look and performance of the real vessel, capable of breakneck speeds in the 50-knot range on courses mirroring those used in SailGP.” The league’s CEO, Sir Russell Coutts, says that by joining the ranks of virtual regattas, SailGP hopes to reach “both existing gamers and those new to esports.” The eSailGP schedule includes Digital Challenges throughout the week, eQualifications and eFinals on Saturday, and live streaming on www.esailing.tv.

eSailGP
A sceenshot of eSailGP.
© 2019 SailGP

Actual Regatta

More interested in the actual on-the-water finale? Here’s the skinny:

The six teams will race on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. See the schedule here. Three races are planned for each day, with Sunday’s last race a final match with the season’s top two teams going head to head for the SailGP Championship trophy and a winner-takes-all US $1 million prize. Australia’s skipper, Tom Slingsby, leads the overall standings by 4 points ahead of fellow Australian Olympic gold medalist Nathan Outteridge, helming the Japanese team.

To hold the regatta in the palm of your hand, download the app here. Other live viewing options in the USA include Facebook and YouTube (warning: mute your device if you’re in a public place; it auto-plays and it’s loud). CBS Sports Network will show delayed coverage.

What, you say you are in Marseille? Lucky dog. You have your choice of spectating from the free Fan Zone or buying tickets to three levels of grandstand experiences or two levels of on-the-water craft.

Next Year

SailGP has already announced that Sydney will host the 2020 season opener. SailGP will return to Sydney Harbour on February 28-29 for the first event of Season 2. Tickets will go on sale November 1.

For much more on all of the above, see https://sailgp.com.

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Following Monday’s story on the amazing escape of Josh and Christina from Hurricane Dorian, we find ourselves in the peak of hurricane season with other threats looming.