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Volvo - Two female stars complete MAPFRE crew

MAPFRE have completed their squad for 2017-18 by naming two female sailors – Spanish Olympic gold medallist Támara Echegoyen and Volvo Ocean Race star Sophie Ciszek.

The addition of Echegoyen is notable for two reasons – she is the first Spanish woman ever to compete in the race, and she takes MAPFRE's Olympic medal count to five.

"It's been months of hard work but I am very happy with the result because thanks to the help of everyone and especially the hours on the boat I have been able to improve in a world that is so new to me," she said.

Ciszek, who raced onboard Team SCA in 2014-15, joins up with Xabi Fernández's crew to compete in her second consecutive edition – and will be keen to build on an impressive debut in which she won the prestigious Hans Horrevoets Rookie Award.

"This time I have an idea of what to expect and I definitely know what it takes to do the race, what it takes to be on board and be competitive," she said.

In less than a week, the 2017-18 fleet will line up alongside each other for the first time this edition as they assemble in Gosport, UK for Leg Zero.

The team departed for Gosport Wednesday and the new recruits join recent edition Blair Tuke and the rest of the all-star crew which is eyeing a first Race win in Spain's history.

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