Clipper Race: First Points Awarded
Published on November 11th, 2017
(November 11, 2017; Day 11) – The first points of Race 3: The Dell Latitude Rugged Race have gone to Sanya Serenity Coast, who crossed the Scoring Gate in first place overnight ahead of the rest of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet.
Sanya Serenity Coast, which has also moved back into first place on the leader board, crossed the northern end of the Scoring Gate at 2103 UTC last night to collect the maximum three bonus points on offer.
Skipper Wendy Tuck reports: “Another day, another upwind bash, but at least there was a bit of a silver lining last night as we crossed the Scoring Gate. A large cheer was heard from up on deck as they counted down to the line on the Garmin instrument. We are still waiting for the breeze to veer, come more from the right, and then we can ease sheet a bit and sail on a much more pleasant and faster speed.”
Next across was the second placed PSP Logistics. After claiming the two bonus points Skipper Matt Mitchell said: “Good job to Wendo and her Sanya Serenity Coast team for pipping us to the post!
“We are now making exactly bearing to waypoint, meaning VTP (Velocity to Pub) is 100%. The downside is that the wind has dropped somewhat meaning we are going a little slower than we would like. Fingers crossed it fills in for us!”
With just 30 nautical miles separating the third placed Qingdao from GREAT Britain in fourth, the competition for the final bonus point on offer in the Scoring Gate was always going to go right down to the wire. Qingdao managed to remain in front to collect points in the Scoring Gate for a third consecutive race.
And it wasn’t only winning the “drag race” against GREAT Britain that has caused excitement on Qingdao, as Skipper Chris Kobusch explains: “Another highlight of the day was the weather forecast, which suggests a change in wind direction over the next 48 hours. Hopefully we finally get the downwind sailing we all expected from the Southern Ocean leg.”
Whilst disappointed to just miss out on the extra points in the Scoring Gate, GREAT Britain is also anticipating the wind change, with Skipper Andy Burns adding: “Hopefully we will be getting the kite up over the next couple of days and start eating through the miles again towards Fremantle.”
Visit Seattle has dropped down the standings from second to be seventh behind Liverpool 2018 and Dare To Lead. The sixth placed Dare To Lead jumped two places up the standings in the last 24 hours, and Skipper Dale Smyth is hoping that trend will continue, saying: “The next few days sees the wind veering slightly and allowing us to point more directly at Australia, and then hopefully a depression with the long-awaited westerlies.”
Behind the eighth placed Unicef, only around 30 nautical miles separates Garmin from the tenth placed Nasdaq. Garmin remains on the most northerly route of all the teams, and Skipper Gaëtan Thomas reports: “Our bow is pointing towards Fremantle now. In the coming days we will have to negotiate a wind hole, but hopefully we are in a good angle for it, so let’s catch the fleet back.”
A wind hole could also be on the cards for the eleventh placed HotelPlanner.com, whose Skipper Conall Morrison says: “The wind is decreasing and we are preparing to hoist our windseeker. We are preparing to be overtaken by a high-pressure system which will leave us without much wind for a day or so”
As Clipper Race Meteorologist Simon Rowell reports, HotelPlanner.com will see much better conditions with the next low. He adds: “Those to the north should continue to see an easing and veering in the wind, allowing you to make a better course at higher speed, whilst those in the south should see the ridge move north with the breeze coming aft and picking up.”
Amid all the racing, thoughts on board are very much with those who have served in the armed forces with teams marking Remembrance Day. Liverpool 2018 Skipper Lance Shepherd says: “Today we take a moment to remember all those fallen in the wars of the past and in current conflicts, and it seems particularly apt to turn our thoughts to those perished at sea. We thank you for your great sacrifice.”
• Greenings ran aground just hours after the start on October 31 of the third leg from Cape Town, South Africa to Fremantle, Australia. The crew was safely evacuated but damage to the boat was deemed too extensive for it to continue in the 2017-18 edition.
• HotelPlanner.com medevaced an injured crew member in Port Elizabeth and brought aboard six new honorary HotelPlanner.com crew members, formally of team Greenings, on board for Race 3 as it continues the race to Fremantle.
The third stage of the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race, officially known as Race 3: The Dell Latitude Rugged Race, got underway October 31 for the 12 teams from Cape Town for the 4,754 nm Southern Ocean sleigh ride towards Fremantle, Australia. Teams are expected to finish between November 21 and 25.
Background: Held biennially, the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race got underway August 20 for the fleet of twelve identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s. The 40,000nm course is divided into 13 individual races with the team having the best cumulative score winning the Clipper Race Trophy. Each team is led by a professional skipper with an all-amateur crew that signs up for one, some, or all the races. The 2017-18 race, expected to take 11 months, has attracted 712 people representing 41 nationalities, making it the largest to date.
Source: Clipper Round the World Yacht Race