Strong winds push Clipper fleet toward San Francisco

Published on April 7th, 2014

(April 7, 2014) – With valuable extra points up for grabs in the Ocean Sprint, the Clipper Race fleet continue to fight it out to become the fastest entry across the lines 142 degrees west and 136 degrees west in Race 10. However, as San Francisco approaches who will triumph and who will be left disappointed?

After entering the Ocean Sprint section of Leg 6 yesterday Henri Lloyd, GREAT Britain, Invest Africa, and Qingdao, have completed the sprint. However, with the remainder of the fleet looking set to catch more favourable wind ahead from the forecast cold front, Old Pulteney and Derry~Londonderry~Doire who both started the sprint in the last 12 hours know all too well they can still give the leaders of the pack a run for their money. Skipper Sean McCarter of Derry~Londonderry~Doire describes the conditions:

“We started our Ocean Sprint this morning but with a constant 40-50 knots of breeze, the race track is a little bumpy to say the least. In fact, I’m sure I saw parts of the track being blown away earlier in 60 knot gusts! Still, much better than bobbing around in 6 knots like a couple of days back.”

Meanwhile, Invest Africa continues to put on one of its best performances so far in the Clipper 2013-14 Race. Will it be third time lucky for the African sponsored entry as the team vies for their third podium position, or will Mother Nature play one of her most wicked cards yet? Skipper Rich Gould describes the forecasted weather and how the team hope to benefit.

“All eyes are now on the weather forecast, and in particular the cell of high pressure sitting off the West Coast. There is still a patch of light winds hanging around between us and San Francisco, but also a small secondary low developing south of our position.

“Although this low should not affect us directly, we are hoping that we will be affected by it indirectly. It looks as though as this depression forms it should draw some air down from the north and in doing so the high should be forced south, and out of our way.For now the weather is holding out, and our generous sail plan continues helping keep up good speeds.”

The latest ETAs for the Clipper Race fleet are detailed below (times are local time in San Francisco). The yachts will take approximately 90 minutes to transit from the finish line to the South Beach Yacht Club.

GREAT Britain – Weds 09 April Late AM
Invest Africa – Weds 09 April PM
Henri Lloyd – Currently in Stealth Mode
Qingdao – Weds 09 April PM
One DLL – Thurs 10 April Early AM
Old Pulteney – Thurs 10 April PM
Derry~Londonderry~Doire – Thurs 10 April PM
Switzerland – Currently in Stealth Mode
Team Garmin – Fri 11 April PM
Mission Performance – Sat 12 April PM
Jamaica Get All Right – Sun 13 April PM
PSP Logistics – Sun 13 April PM

During the Clipper Race’s stay at South Beach Yacht Club, San Francisco there will be several events open to the public.

Report by event media

Skipper reports: http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com/skipper-reports
Race tracker: http://yb.tl/clipper2013-race10
Race website: http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com

Background:
The 40,000 mile Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race began in London, UK on September 1 for the fleet of twelve identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s.

Eleven teams started the 5,600 mile leg from Qingdao, China to San Francisco, USA on March 16. PSP Logistics started the leg on March 19, a result of their late arrival into China due to several setbacks.

All twelve teams are expected in San Francisco between April 9-13, subject to prevailing conditions. The fleet will be berthed at South Beach Yacht Club until the April 19 start of Race 11 to the Panama Canal.

The race route includes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Cape Town, South Africa; Albany, Sydney, Hobart and Brisbane, Australia; Singapore; Qingdao, China; San Francisco, USA; Panama; Jamaica; New York, USA; Derry-Londonderry, Ireland; and Den Helder, Netherlands before returning to London in July.

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