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Rockwool Canada Sail Grand Prix updates

May 31, 2024 – SailGP rivalries set to ignite in Halifax as fleet draws closer to $2 million Season 4 Grand Final in July

For the first time in SailGP history, the ten national teams take flight on the waters of Halifax for the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix this weekend June 1-2. Marking the eleventh stop on the league’s largest calendar to date – thirteen events across North America, EMEA, and APAC – pressure weighs heavily on the entire fleet with only two events to go ahead of the $2 million Season 4 Grand Final in San Francisco on July 13-14.

The spotlight shines brightly on Phil Robertson and the Canada SailGP Team as they take to home waters for the very first time. The city of Halifax welcomes the global league with open arms – hosting a number of events and activations in the lead up to what’s predicted to be a superb weekend of racing with high winds expected to deliver an adrenaline-fueled spectacle for a sold-out crowd that snapped up tickets in record breaking time.

Competing on home waters has proven to give a few teams that extra firepower to secure an event win – Tom Slingsby and the Australia SailGP Team in Sydney, and Peter Burling and New Zealand’s Black Foils team in Christchurch.

After a disappointing run in Bermuda, time is running out for the Canadian team to secure a spot in the Grand Final – can racing in front of a home crowd finally lock in a first Season 4 event win for Canada?

Robertson said: “We are extremely pumped to be here in Canada – Halifax, what a harbor – it’s been a long time coming and one of the visions of the team when it first started was to have a home event and here we are – about to light it up!”

Taylor Canfield and the United States SailGP Team suffered the biggest devastation amongst the fleet at the last event when the team dramatically capsized ahead of the weekend during official practice racing caused by the wing-trimmer error.

USA athletes were thrown from the boat, thankfully only sustaining very minor injuries – however the F50 did not come out unscathed. As a result, the team was unable to compete in racing over the weekend due to significant damage to the wingsail. Due to the hard work of the SailGP Tech Team, USA will be back on the startline, ready to compete this weekend.

Canfield said: “We’re the new team in the league and pushing hard to have an all American team – we believe we have an incredible group of sailors in our country to get the job done. Good days out on the water – we are pushing towards the front of the fleet – with a few more events and training days, we will continue raising that bar.”

Contention lies around the fact that the USA team didn’t receive penalty points for the capsize in Bermuda. Slingsby said: “We were deemed to be wrecklessly sailing [in Christchurch] and through a mistake of our own – had serious damage to our boat and incurred a lot of season penalty points. They [USA SailGP Team] pressed a wrong button – that’s a mistake of their own – and incurred serious damage but zero penalty points. I don’t care what the rule is as long as it’s consistent and it hasn’t been consistent.”

The youngest team in the league, Diego Botin and Los Gallos of Spain, managed to secure a spectacular event win in Bermuda – making it their second event win of the season after victory in Los Angeles last July. The team now sits in third place on the overall leaderboard behind the Black Foils and the Aussies – and have managed to significantly extend their lead on Nicolai Sehested’s ROCKWOOL Denmark and Quentin Delapierre’s France in fourth and fifth place respectively.

Botin said: “At the beginning of the season we were dreaming about being in this position and we weren’t sure it was possible. We still have three events and you see a lot of teams improving from event to event because of the shared data in SailGP. Conditions here are going to be super tricky. We need to stay super focused because there are currently a lot of points on the table.”

Event wins and leaderboard success for the Spain SailGP Team is absolutely crucial as the team find themselves in a sticky situation where they may not have a team in Season 5 if they don’t find a buyer. And the Spanish are not alone – the same goes for France, Canada and New Zealand.

Quentin Delapierre, driver of France SailGP Team, said: “I truly believe that the French sailing nation has its place in SailGP and I want the French to stay in this league. I try to show the best image of the team, show our value and our ambition.”

Despite the rising concern of finding a team owner ahead of Season 5, Burling and the Black Foils are laser focused on remaining on top of the Season 4 leaderboard this weekend. Reigning champions Slingsby and the Australia SailGP Team trail ten points behind the Black Foils due to a combination of incurring season penalty points earlier this season and not having the best of performances in Bermuda.

The rivalry between the two heavyweight teams is at an all time high and Burling and Slingsby plan to do whatever it takes to come out on top.

Slingsby said: “It’s been tough staying on top for four years, we are going to go through highs and lows. We haven’t had many lows – we had one bad event in Christchurch and if we didn’t have that event we would still be leading the overall leaderboard.

“We have had a great season with eight podiums in ten events. Pete [Burling] and the team have won a lot more events than us. It makes it feel like we are the hunters for the first time in SailGP and we love being in this position.”

Rumors have surfaced that Saturday may consist of four fleet races – a final decision is expected to be made in the morning ahead of the first day of racing.

The ten national teams compete in two podiums – taking part in the world-first Purpose initiative, the Impact League – which tracks the teams positive actions to reduce their carbon footprint and accelerate inclusivity in sailing.

The guest panel of judges – consisting of sustainability and sport experts – voted the ROCKWOOL Denmark SailGP Team team as winner of the third key focus area Climate action – innovating for a low carbon future. This focus area mobilizes teams to collaborate with their purpose partners and wider stakeholders to address climate change across SailGP operations and across our value chain.

The Danish team is focused on protecting the health of SailGP’s racetrack – the ocean. To mark the event this weekend, the team is collaborating with Title Partner ROCKWOOL and purpose partner One Ocean Foundation, plus Dalhousie University and CERI, to launch a unique, SailGP-wide seagrass re-planting mission – with an adrenaline-fueled, racing twist that is known as the Race to Restore.

Sehested said: “Very happy and excited to win it. We like to keep it competitive and fun at the same time – so we are engaging all the teams in this one – where you plant 300 sqm of seagrass and you can collect points if you score points in racing on the water. You collect points for how many sqm of seagrass you are getting – that’s been a great project for us and we are happy to pull the win with that one.”


  1. New Zealand 77 points
  2. Australia 67 points
  3. Spain 65 points
  4. ROCKWOOL Denmark 56 points
  5. France 56 points
  6. Canada 53 points
  7. United States 49 points
  8. Emirates GBR 48 points
  9. Germany 32 point
  10. Switzerland 26 points

1 June, 2024 (day 1 racing) – Emirates Great Britain tops leaderboard on opening day of ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix

Emirates Great Britain driver Giles Scott has responded to his critics with a commanding performance to secure the top position following the opening day of racing at the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix.

The first ever ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix, which saw thousands of fans taking in the action along the Halifax waterfront, provided a number of challenging conditions with strong winds, rain and bitterly cold waters causing havoc for the drivers and their teams.

After Friday’s heated press conference which saw many of the drivers come to loggerheads over contentious issues at recent events, Emirates GBR driver Giles Scott, who has struggled since taking over from Ben Ainslie as driver of the team at the turn of the year, put in three consistent performances on the opening day of racing.

Scott said: “It was a good day and I was a little bit surprised to be out in front at the start of each of the three races, but we’re obviously pretty pleased.”

After the USA Team’s disastrous capsize incident which took them out of racing at the recent Apex Bermuda Sail Grand Prix, the pressure was on for driver Taylor Canfield to deliver a comeback for his team in Halifax.

However, the team endured another tough day on the water with three back-to-back last place finishes, leaving them with a mountain to climb going into Sunday’s racing. Canfield said: “It was a difficult day for us, we had some new players in key roles on the boat and it was a little bit of a trial by fire but, again, we’re learning and got a lot better throughout the day.”

It was the Canada SailGP Team that the home fans came to see and team driver Phil Robertson didn’t disappoint with a string of entertaining and energetic performances – in particular the final race of the day, which saw the Canada and Emirates GBR F50s come close to colliding as they both approached the finish line. Robertson and the Canada Team secured two top three finishes, ending the day in fourth place on the leaderboard.

Commenting on the home crowd, Robertson said: “It was pretty sick and the fans were unbelievable and I don’t think we’ve seen that yet at a SailGP event. I know that we had pretty big crowds in New Zealand but I think that this event has topped that. We’re stoked to be here in Halifax and the turnout has been unbelievable.”

Peter Burling and the New Zealand SailGP team look to be in a strong position going into the final day, securing second spot on the day one leaderboard. The Black Foils will be most happy about the performance of their nearest rivals in the overall Season 4 leaderboard, the Australia SailGP Team and Tom Slingsby, who finished the day in a lowly sixth place. Burling said: “It was nice to get off the start line reasonably well today and we’re really happy to put together three solid scores and be at the top end of the leaderboard.”

Elsewhere, Diego Botin and the Spain SailGP Team looked set to pick up where they left off after winning the Apex Bermuda Sail Grand Prix, securing victory in the first race of the day. However, the remaining two races didn’t go as well for Los Gallos, with the team finishing the day in fifth place, which means the hunting teams of ROCKWOOL Denmark and Canada have all to play for on Sunday.

ROCKWOOL Denmark driver Nicolai Sehested was able to overcome the challenging conditions to secure his team a third place position in the day one leaderboard. Sehested said: “It’s hard not to be happy and we’re still in the mix despite it being a tricky day. There are so many elements to today’s racing – you had to get off the start line the right way because of the wind and handling the boat was really challenging.”

With only five points separating the top six teams on the leaderboard, all teams will be on the hunt to earn a seat in the winner-takes-all Grand Final of the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix.


  • Emirates Great Britain 23 points
  • New Zealand 22 points
  • ROCKWOOL Denmark 21 points
  • Canada 20 points
  • Spain 20 points
  • Australia 18 points
  • France 18 points
  • Germany 11 points
  • Switzerland 9 points
  • United States 3 points

2 June, 2024 (day 2 racing) – Emirates Great Britain wins ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix

Emirates Great Britain has taken the win in a weather-hit final at the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix – with driver Giles Scott claiming his first SailGP victory since stepping into the driver’s seat in January of this year.

Clocking top speeds in excess of 93 km/h, Emirates Great Britain thrived in tumultuous conditions. The Brits finished in the top three of both fleet races, before clinching victory in the winner-takes-all Final ahead of France and Spain, who finished second and third respectively.

The victory is momentous for driver Giles Scott, who has come under fierce criticism for his performances since replacing sailing great Sir Ben Ainslie earlier in the year. Today’s win moves Emirates GBR up to sixth on the overall season standings, now 13 points off third as all teams push towards the lucrative $2 million Grand Final in San Francisco in July.

Scott said: “A win at any league event is huge and certainly for me, personally, to come off the back of a pretty frustrating apprenticeship in SailGP. To come out with a win here is massive and it’s nice to be able to put a marker down and prove that you’re capable of winning.”

The day’s conditions also caused drama off the water – with high winds forcing SailGP to adopt an adjusted format after being unable to safely crane all ten F50s into the water in time for the start of racing. With team’s prioritized in order of day one standings, Switzerland and the U.S. were unable to race on day two, whilst Germany missed out on Fleet Race Four.

The other major talking point from the ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix was the dramatic capsize involving Australia on the final upwind leg of Fleet Race Five. With tumultuous conditions playing no small part, driver Tom Slingsby pointed to a ‘malfunction’ with boat controls as a cause of the incident. All athletes are fine, but the incident builds on recent woes for the Aussie crew, including an eight season-point penalty in Christchurch.

Slingsby said: “No one touched a button and the wing inverted and resulted in a capsize. It’s a technical issue and I feel like a broken record. I don’t like to blame anyone or anything, but it feels like we’ve been pretty unlucky with technical issues.”

The inaugural ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix has proven a favorite among fans, with thousands braving the rain to watch the action from the sold-out Race Stadium, alongside packed crowds watching from multiple vantage points around waterfront and surrounding harbor.

Despite the home crowd support and a win in Fleet Race Four, the Canada SailGP Team had a disappointing day overall, finishing last in Fleet Race Five to miss out on the Grand Final and end the weekend sixth overall.

Robertson said: “We were having a very good time and how could you not in front of that many people and your home country? We were in pretty good shape going into the last race and we just let it slip away again. It is what it is and what an epic event we’ve just had.”

New Zealand maintains the top spot on the Season 4 Championship leaderboard, despite a fifth place finish at the event overall. It was the first time that the Black Foils have missed out on a Final since Cadiz last year. With Australia bumped from second to third in the overall standings, there are now five teams in close contention for the Grand Final.

Despite being critical of the ‘disappointing’ decision for his team not to race, U.S. SailGP Team CEO and strategist Mike Buckley remained positive about upcoming consecutive home events in New York (22-23 June) and San Francisco (13-14 July).

Buckley said: “Racing in New York City, where I live with my family, I can’t wait to get there. I think it’s going to be a brilliant show of racing with the rest of the world. Our last two events in the United States are going to be awesome for us. We can’t wait.”

SailGP continues its North American tour with all ten teams heading to the Big Apple for the penultimate event of the season, the Mubadala New York Sail Grand Prix, 22-23 June. Fans will be able to experience the most exciting racing on water in front of the iconic New York City skyline and Statue of Liberty. Limited tickets to the event remain – available for purchase at .


  • Emirates Great Britain 10 points
  • France 9 points
  • ROCKWOOL Denmark 8 points
  • Spain 7 points
  • New Zealand 6 points
  • Canada 5 points
  • Australia 4 points
  • Germany 3 points (did not compete in Fleet Race Four)
  • Switzerland 2 points (Switzerland did not compete in Sunday’s racing)
  • United States 1 points (USA did not compete in Sunday’s racing)


  • New Zealand 83 points
  • Spain 72 points
  • Australia 71 points
  • France 65 points
  • ROCKWOOL Denmark 64 points
  • Emirates GBR 58 points
  • Canada 58 points
  • USA 50 points
  • Germany 35 points
  • Switzerland 28 points

Season penalties

  • Australia SailGP Team – docked eight points in Season Championship for 12-point penalty at ITM New Zealand Sail Grand Prix | Christchurch
  • Canada SailGP Team – docked four points in Season Championship for eight-point penalty at France Sail Grand Prix | Saint-Tropez
  • Emirates Great Britain – docked four points in Season Championship for eight-point penalty at ITM New Zealand Sail Grand Prix | Christchurch
  • Germany SailGP Team – docked two points in Season Championship for four-point penalty at Oracle Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix
  • New Zealand SailGP Team unable to compete in Taranto due to the structural failure of the team’s wingsail at France Sail Grand Prix | Saint-Tropez
  • ROCKWOOL Denmark – docked four points in Season Championship for eight-point penalty at ITM New Zealand Sail Grand Prix | Christchurch
  • Spain SailGP Team – docked two points in Season Championship for four-point penalty at Spain Sail Grand Prix | Andalucía – Cádiz
  • Switzerland SailGP Team – docked four points in Season Championship for eight-point penalty at Mubadala Abu Dhabi Sail Grand Prix presented by Abu Dhabi Sports Council


  • ROCKWOOL Denmark 454 points
  • Switzerland 432 points
  • Emirates Great Britain 420 points
  • France 411 points
  • Australia 404 points
  • New Zealand 390 points
  • Germany 385 points
  • United States 381 points
  • Canada 369 points
  • Spain 341 points