Unmissable action – made possible by Inmarsat. As the official Satellite Communications Partner for the fifth consecutive edition of the Volvo Ocean Race in 2017-18, we delivered essential safety services, fleet tracking and voice and data communications to each of the race boats, accessed via the world’s most reliable global mobile satellite network.

The 45,000 nm challenge, now called The Ocean Race, went on to win the BT Sports Industry Cutting Edge Sport Award, with judges praising its “advanced use of technology to enhance the media coverage of sailing, making it a more immersive and accessible sport”.

The Volvo Ocean 65 race yachts were equipped with our reliable maritime services and satellite phone:

Inmarsat C beamed back the boats’ GPS locations to race HQ every 10 seconds. This, together with our FleetBroadband voice safety services and the GPS tracking and alert functions on our satellite phone, kept the crews as safe as is possible when you are taking on the most challenging environment on Earth.

With Inmarsat services onboard, the Volvo Ocean Race crews had the best communications from boat-to-shore and shore-to-boat – to seek medical advice mid-leg, report damage so repairs could be arranged at the next stopover, or wish a desperately-missed loved one a happy birthday.

For nine months and over 11 legs, the boats’ Onboard Reporters and crew shared thrilling videos and stories with millions of fans via TV, websites and social media channels – and competed for The Inmarsat Communications Award for the most outstanding content contributor overall.

Leg 7 from Auckland to Itajai, day 13 on board Dongfeng. Carolijn Brouwer enjoying her last day on the south with a beautiful sunset. 28 March, 2018.
Leg 01, Alicante to Lisbon, First Morning on board AkzoNobel. Photo by Konrad Frost/Volvo Ocean Race. 23 October, 2017

2017-18 edition facts

  • 72 male and 23 female sailors representing 18 nationalities took part
  • 12,203 high-resolution pictures were sent from the boats for media
  • 6,596 minutes of video was streamed live from the boats
  • 182 live video calls were made from the boats
  • 66m viewers watched the Inmarsat finish line live broadcast in The Hague
  • 5m people visited the race villages
  • Just 16 min and 1 sec separated first and second place after 126 days of racing
  • Over 277m telemetry data was sent back to HQ
  • 117,129 online articles were published about the Volvo Ocean Race
  • Volvo Ocean Race social media post engagement reached 168m
  • The most popular social media video had 23m+ views

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