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VOR: New gender rules help Jo Aleh (NZL) chase her Ocean Race dream

AUCKLAND – More Southern Ocean racing this time means teams are likely to face gruelling conditions for longer, so skippers can take up to three extra sailors – as long as they’re women. Teams who choose to stick with a male crew are limited to seven pairs of hands on board.“There’s one boat that’s chosen not to take women so far, and they’re getting last all the time… which I quite enjoy!” [Jo] Aleh laughs. She admits, however, to being in two minds about the inducements offered to selecting a mixed crew. “In some ways I wish there didn’t have to be a rule, because it’s saying: ‘Everyone has seven guys, and oh, if you want, you get to take a couple of girls for free’,” she says. “But I also see that if there wasn’t the rule, there probably wouldn’t be any women in the race. So I’m really glad they did it."Suzanne McFadden, writing another terrific article for the newsroom.co.nz website, today. Full story.

The gender options available for VOR yachts. Image courtesy of Volvo Ocean Race.