'We'll be better yachties for doing this' - America's Cup heroes turned rivals Burling and Tuke on newest challenge

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Having competed alongside one another for most of their careers, heroic Kiwi sailing duo Peter Burling and Blair Tuke will now come face-to-face against each other when the Volvo Ocean Race begins in Spain next month.

Team NZ America's Cup heroes Blair Tuke and Peter Burling speak to Seven Sharp about their Volvo challenge.
Source: Seven Sharp

With Tuke initially joining up with Spanish outfit Maprfe in July, and Burling following suit to link up with Dutch team Brunel a month later, the Kiwi pair will race around the globe as rivals rather than team-mates.

The duo have sailed together since they were teenagers, claiming both an Olympic gold medal and this year's America's Cup in Bermuda, but are now looking to add another - and arguably the most difficult - honour to their respective trophy cabinets, although don't expect their relationship to change too much.

"We're both competitive people, and we want to try and win that trophy," Tuke told Seven Sharp.

"But at the same time, we've both got a lot of respect for each other."

Burling meanwhile, says that the pair are both excited by the new challenge - which has seen them move from the 49ers, to catamarans, now to monohull yachts.

"It's just a new skill set."

"It's something that we're really enjoying."

Regardless, the pair will no doubt be back at each other's side in the future, hoping to use what they learn on their new adventure for the good of New Zealand sailing.

"When we team up for another challenge down the road, I think we'll be better yachties for doing this," Burling said.

The Volvo Ocean Race begins in the Spanish city of Alicante on October 14, carrying through until June 30 2018.

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