Francesca Clapcich, the only Italian to win The Ocean Race, will lead UpWind by MerConcept, a new racing program aimed at providing female sailors with opportunities at the highest levels of offshore racing. The initiative, supported by founding partner 11th Hour Racing, will compete in the Ocean Fifty offshore trimaran circuit for the next two years, including a west-to-east transatlantic race. The program, mentored by industry veterans, aims to promote diversity, inclusion, and sustainable excellence in offshore sailing.

By the Numbers
  • Deadline for female sailor applications: March 24, 2024
  • Shortlist of twelve candidates invited to France for a week-long selection process
State of Play
  • Francesca Clapcich to lead the new racing program by MerConcept
  • Program supported by founding partner 11th Hour Racing
  • Mentored by experienced sailors and technical shore teams
  • Based in Concarneau, France, MerConcept is known for boat design, building, and sustainable innovation
Bottom Line

UpWind by MerConcept, led by Francesca Clapcich, seeks to advance diversity, inclusion, and sustainable excellence in offshore sailing by providing female sailors with racing opportunities at the highest levels of the sport.