Sunday, 21 April 2013

Sailing Legend Magnus Olsson has passed away

Magnus Olsson. Image copyright Oskar Kihlborg/Volvo Ocean Race

by Victoria Low

Magnus Olsson (64), one of the greatest sportsmen in the world of sailing and one of the coaches and mentors for Team SCA, has passed away at a hospital in Spain. His family and friends were by his side.

Magnus suffered a stroke during the week and, despite initial positive signs, deteriorated over the following days.

Magnus Olsson's irrepressible sense of humour: the Vikings of Ericsson 3 even turned the Mayor of Galway into a Viking on arrival! Image copyright Rick Tomlinson/Volvo Ocean Race

“Mange was the greatest person I have ever met, one of my very best friends, and one of the greatest sailors ever. He was a unique man who brought energy, humour and love to everyone around him. Our thoughts are with his family at this very sad time. He meant a lot to so many people and currently he was a fundamental part of Team SCA. The team will continue the great work that he started, training and working in the way that he would have expected. He will be sorely missed by us all. It is a true privilege to have been a friend of Mange, and I will proudly carry his legacy with me forever,” said Richard Brisius, Managing Director of Team SCA, SCA's participation in the Volvo Ocean Race.

Ericsson 3, the boat that Magnus Olsson skippered in the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-9. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

“Magnus was a great sportsman who, throughout his impressive offshore racing career, brought his passionate spirit and enthusiasm to the sport. He has inspired our female crew, many other sailors, both young and old, and all of us who had the opportunity of meeting and knowing him. Magnus will be deeply missed around the world. Our thoughts now go to his family and all who were touched by his energy and passionate spirit,” said Jan Johansson, President and CEO of SCA.