On Sunday 29 January, the VOR70 Mirpuri Foundation (formally Green Dragon) left the Cape Verde Island of Sao Vincente to sail the 2,300 nm to Barbados, in the Caribbean.
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Skippered by Portuguese businesssman Paulo Mirpuri, the initial voyage signals the start of his ambitious sailing project to sponsor a Portuguese team in the 2020 Volvo Ocean Race.
The Mirpuri Foundation left Sao Vincente following a press conference and the presentation of the video "Eleventh hour wakeup call - Save the Ocean Program", produced by the Mirpuri Foundation to raise awarness to the question of the preservation of the oceans.
As Paulo Mirpuri explained, "This ocean crossing will promote this work of the Mirpuri Foundation and the choice of Cape Verde as a starting point for this voyage was not by chance."
"We know that a substantial part of the island's economy is based on the oceans, with artisanal fishing, and we would like to sensitize the local authorities to an involvement in the preservation of this universal patrimony that is the ocean."
The VOR70 began the crossing of the North Atlantic at dusk on Sunday, with 30 knot Northeast winds and facing 3 to 5 meter waves.
Co-skipper and project manager, Johannes Schwarz described the conditions as:
"Perfect, with a high-pressure system stationary in the middle of the North Atlantic, producing a steady stream of northeastern trade winds that will allow a downwind navigation virtually all the way to Barbados."
The Mirpuri Foundation is expected to arrive in Bridgetown, Barbados on Saturday 4 February after a crossing of 4 to 5 days.
The Mirpuri Foundation is a non-profit foundation set up in Portugal by the businessman and philanthropist Paulo Mirpuri as a vehicle to manage his family’s charitable donations and to support specific projects in aerospace, medical research, marine conservation, wildlife conservation and social responsibility.
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30 January 2017 10:40 GMT