Auckland, 27 February 2015: Yachting logistics specialist GAC Pindar has been busy at New Zealand’s premier sailing hub, Auckland, getting everything ready for today’s arrival of the teams competing in the Volvo Ocean Race.
As official logistics provider for the round-the-world race, GAC Pindar worked around the clock to get everything in place and shipshape when the crews sail into the port known as “The City of Sails”, after the latest leg – 5, 264 gruelling nautical miles from Sanya, China.
Planning started more than a year ago, with meetings with host organisers to work out all the details for the Auckland bump-in and bump-out. Even so, they faced tight deadlines to get the shipment – one of two identical Race Villages leap-frogging one another along the route – delivered on time.
They also faced the additional challenge presented by New Zealand’s strict quarantine regulations, which was met by GAC Pindar arranging for two quarantine officers to travel to Abu Dhabi to pre-clear all of the containers. The first 60 containers arrived on 12 February, signalling the start of frenzied activity at the port to build the Race Village, and the remaining 40 containers arrived a week later. A third shipment containing some items to start the Volvo pavilion, the centre piece of the Race Village, was shipped separately from the Netherlands as the items used in Abu Dhabi could not have arrived in time.
“Five GAC offices worked closely together to ensure the smooth running of the operation, to have everything in place for today’s opening of the Race Village, ” says Richard Thorpe, TNL GAC Pindar Manager Australasia. “It took a monumental team effort to meet the Auckland stop-over logistics challenge. With just one container ship arriving from Tanjung Pelepas into Auckland per week, this was one of the toughest legs yet, so we’re delighted that everything was ready ahead of schedule.”
When the boats depart for Itajaί, Brazil, on 15 March, the GAC Pindar crew will once again be in action for the bump-out. In just four days, two-thirds of the containers must be ready for loading onto a container ship headed for Philadelphia, USA, for the Newport stopover.
By the end of the race in June GAC Pindar employees, including eleven permanent staff, will have worked over 21, 000 man hours to complete this unique logistics test.
To keep up-to-date with all the action from the Volvo Ocean Race visit http://volvooceanrace.com