Ronstan

Clipper Race: Henri Lloyd wins battle, wins war

Published on July 4th, 2014

(July 4, 2014) – Henri Lloyd has won its fifth race of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, the OneDLL Cup, Race 15 from Derry-Londonderry to Den Helder, The Netherlands, the fleet’s penultimate stopover before the homecoming into London.

The win is the team’s ninth podium overall and Canadian skipper Eric Holden and his crew have secured enough points to be unbeatable in the series. They will look forward to being crowned champions of the Clipper 2013-14 Race in London on 12 July.

Henri Lloyd finished at 09:41 local time, 07:41 UTC and is now making its way into the dock at Willemsoord in Den Helder, a naval port in North Holland.

Old Pulteney, skippered by Dutch man Patrick van der Zijden, finished in second place at 09:57:11 local time, 07:57:11 UTC, and Switzerland finished in third place at 10:36 local time, 08:36 UTC, its third podium of the race.

Henri Lloyd skipper Eric Holden said it had been a very stressful race with wind holes, strong tides, busy shipping lanes and oil rigs to look out for.

“We knew we had a good position but that anything could happen and we could have gotstuck in a wind hole at any time, and gales were also a concern.“We followed our same strategy where we are always in the hunt nipping at the heels of the front pack and then waiting for an opportunity to make our move. You have to be ready.

“First comes relief then elation will come after, but right now its exhaustion and we are happy it’s over,” he added.

Skipper of Old Pulteney, Patrick van der Zijden, said: “We really wanted to win after the comeback we made in the last race, and to get second place into my home country was extra special.

“We have always been a happy boat, but now we have turned into a winning team. We have massive amounts of enthusiasm. We changed one person on a watch and it has given the extra pressure we needed.”

Skipper of Switzerland, Vicky Ellis, added: “I have been sailing in the North Sea and Scotland for many years and that podium was not going to go to anyone else.

“It was a very stressful last 90 miles with Derry~Londonderry~Doire a mile or two behind and you cannot miss a beat. This morning we saw we were missing a knot of speed and we had 20 minutes to try and retune and trim the boat and thankfully we found it.

“We are exhausted but delighted with our third podium.”

Derry~Londonderry~Doire finished six minutes behind Switzerland in fourth place at 10:42:04 local time, 08:42.04 UTC.

GREAT Britain finished off the Dutch coast in fifth place at 11:19:14 local time, 09:19:14 UTC. OneDLL finished in sixth place at 11:26:25 local time, 09:26:25 UTC.

Team Garmin finished in seventh at 12:06 local time, 10:06 UTC. PSP Logistics finished in eighth at 13:25 local time, 11:25 UTC.

All the teams will be welcomed to Den Helder in traditional Dutch style with a ‘jenever’ drink, pickled herring and Dutch clogs. A ‘Holland Days’ festival awaits them over the weekend with music, international food, street theatre and the official OneDLL Cup prizegiving on Saturday evening from 20:00.

The fiercely fought 800 mile race from Derry-Londonderry in Northern Ireland is the penultimate stage of the 40,000 mile ocean odyssey.

Clipper Race director Justin Taylor said Race 15 had a tough start with light airs, wind holes and a becalmed sea state as it turned into a huge tactical game.

“Congratulations once again to Henri Lloyd who now has an unassailable lead and will be crowned champions in London.

“We have had a very tactical race dominated by light airs and strong tides. Every wind shift has to be seen and played for maximum benefit, amongst a fleet of boats where every tenth of a knot counts.”

Paul FD Strzelecki, Joint Chief Executive of marine clothing company Henri Lloyd, also congratulated the team on arrival into The Netherlands.

” I still can’t believe it. It’s the first time we have sponsored a boat in a round the world race and the amazing team led by Eric have won. It’s a very emotional time. I can’t help thinking about my late father Henri who founded Henri Lloyd and equipped Sir Robin Knox-Johnston back in the 60’s. He would have loved this so much. I’m sure there is a big smile on his face as there is on mine.

“We often say we equip legends- well we’ve just done it again and our name is on the boat! Well done to Eric and all the crew over the different legs. Thank you for making us so proud.”

The final race, 250nm from Den Helder, Netherlands to London UK, will start on July 10, 2014.

Report by event media.

Skipper reports: http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com/skipper-reports
Crew diaries: http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com/crew-diaries
Race tracker: http://yb.tl/clipper2013-race15
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.

The 12 teams began Race 15, the 770nm leg from Derry-Londonderry, Northern Irleland to Den Helder, Netherlands, on June 29.

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 on July 12.

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