Barcelona world race suspended over political instability

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Barcelona, March 29 (IANS) The fourth edition of the Barcelona world race has been suspended due to difficulties in finding sponsorship brought about by political instability in Spain, the Barcelona Ocean Sailing Foundation announced on Thursday.

Starting and finishing in the Catalan city in northeastern Spain, the two-crew round-the-world yacht race was set to kick off on January 12, 2019, reports Efe.

“A sporting event of this scale requires significant private sponsorship, which is its only source of funding. And this last year, the course of events has prevented the FNOB (the sailing foundation) from ensuring a reliable sponsorship process,” FNOB said in a statement.

The event’s organisers regretted having had to suspend the race “given that its new format (mandatory stopover in Sydney and possible change of co-skipper) has significantly increased interest,” among teams.

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Despite the suspension, the FNOB was planning to organise a new edition of the Barcelona World Race, to be held in 2022-23.

Catalonia has been facing political instability since October’s independence referendum and a subsequent declaration of unilateral independence, which led the country’s central government in Madrid to dissolve the region’s government and call a new election.

–IANS

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