City seeks Ocean Race stopover for 2020
GALWAY city will apply to host the Volvo Ocean Race in 2020 for the third time. If its application is successful, the stopover could coincide with the city being the European Capital of Culture.
Galway harbourmaster Brian Sheridan said 2020 would be the next available opportunity to apply for a stopover and this could be timely if the city was to be successful in being named European Capital of Culture for the same year.
"The route for the current race, which starts in Alicante in October of this year, is obviously decided and they have already chosen Cardiff in the Irish Sea as the port of choice for the next campaign. It won't hit any other Irish port, so it will be 2020 before we can see it back," said Mr Sheridan.
He said the additional time would allow Galway to put in place an events space and a concert space as part of the harbour redevelopment plans.
Galway Harbour Company CEO Eamon Bradshaw said it was only since the Volvo Ocean Race first came to Ireland in 2009 that the idea of bringing the harbour into the city had taken off.
"They were fantastic occasions on the two visits and it was clear to us that we really should bring the two entities together again."
A report from the School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway found that the 2012 Volvo Ocean Race Finale (VOR) was worth over €60m to the economy, with over 500,000 visitors attending events.