Rescue Incident Earns Recognition

Published on August 1st, 2016

The tenth edition of the world’s longest ocean race, the 40,000 nm Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race, came to a close on July 30 when the fleet of twelve identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s returned to London, UK to complete their 11-month lap around the world.

One of the memories from the race earned the Mission Performance team the Henri Lloyd Clipper Race Seamanship Award.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMission Performance crew member Gavin Reid and his team were selected for the honour through a public vote after the team went to the assistance of a yacht in distress during the leg from Hobart to Whitsundays in Australia.

The team discovered the M3 yacht (a non Clipper Race vessel) with a wrapped propeller, a damaged mainsail, and a sailor stuck at the top of the mast, and the team suspended racing to go to its assistance.

During the rescue, the 28-year-old Reid climbed the vessel’s mast and took two hours to free the yacht’s crewman, who had been trapped for nine hours. During the time on task, the boat was buffeted by a heavy sea state making the ordeal hazardous, exhausting, and mentally challenging.

Mission Performance additionally made its on board medic available to the M3 crew.

“It’s all a bit of a blur really,” remarked Reid. “At the time it was just something I felt I had to do and am honoured to have been recognised for it. I can’t believe I have completed my circumnavigation, it’s a bit of a whirlwind. It has been an unbelievable experience there are no words that can describe it.”

Congratulating Mission Performance, Clipper Race Chairman and founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston said: “I am enormously proud of Gavin and Mission Performance, who put the desire to win to one side and suspended racing to go to the aid of another vessel that wasn’t a member of the race fleet in tough weather conditions. This is in the spirit of true seamanship and Gavin and the team should be justly proud of themselves too.”

Held biennially, the next edition of the Clipper Race will start in Summer 2017.

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Background: The 40,000 mile Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race began in London, UK on August 30 for the fleet of twelve identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s. The series was divided into 16 individual races, with the team with the best cumulative score winning the Clipper Race Trophy. Each team was led by a professional skipper with an all-amateur crew.

The ports along the race route were Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Cape Town, South Africa; Albany, Sydney, Hobart and Airlie Beach, Australia; Da Nang, Vietnam; Qingdao, China; Seattle, USA; Panama; New York, USA; Derry-Londonderry, Ireland; and Den Helder, Netherlands before returning to London by July 30.

Source: Clipper Round the World Yacht Race

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