Clipper Race: Rich get richer
Published on October 4th, 2019
(October 4, 2019; Race 2, Day 19) – The miles for the Clipper 2019-20 Round the World Yacht Race to Punta del Este, Uruguay, continue to fall away as a serious battle builds at the front between Visit Sanya, China and Qingdao.
As it continues racing off the coast of Brazil, Visit Sanya is celebrating it’s fifteenth consecutive day in the lead. However, the top spot on the leaderboard could be under serious threat. Qingdao, which played its Joker Card for this race, made huge ground overnight, covering 129 nautical miles in the last 12 hours alone, to move to within 14nm of first place.
Visit Sanya Skipper Seumas Kellock is keeping a close eye on his challenger and said: “As the morning grew old, the wind came less and less from the east and more and more from the south, completely un-forecast which made my frustration even worse. This had turned our beautiful day of beam/ broad reaching into a day of beating up wind. It has been slower, more uncomfortable, but worst of all, not the direction I wanted to be going.
“The wind has now come back around to an acceptable direction but it has cost us dearly, allowing Chris and his team on Qingdao to make up some serious ground on us.”
Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam remains in third place but has fallen off the pace, now 148 nm behind Qingdao. While there is still a healthy gap on the fourth placed Dare To Lead, Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam Skipper Josh Stickland commented: “Well, we are chewing up the miles; 1,776 nm to go while writing this so we are finally on a beam reach! I think this is our first time since London that we have been on this point of sail for a prolonged period.
“This Race 2 is a long one and requires a lot of focus from us all. The crew have done well for the 19 days so far but they must continue this right till the very end, and that is what me and Hugo (our Mate) shall continue to do.”
The final three teams – Punta del Este, GoToBermuda, and Imagine your Korea, are due to complete the Dell Latitude Rugged Ocean Sprint today, meaning the final bonus points on offer in Race 2 will soon be decided. With everything to play for, the yachts at the back of the fleet are pushing just as hard as those at the front did.
Imagine your Korea Skipper Mike Surridge reported: “An ocean sprint is a bit like running a marathon and then just for fun somebody puts a 200m sprint into the run! The sea is bouncy, and we are bombing along so it’s a bit of a bucking bronco ride just now.
“On a positive the Dell Latitude Rugged Ocean Sprint has increased focus on our speed and we have had up to 13 knots.”
Which teams will be awarded the precious three, two and one bonus points on offer?
To follow the ETA for when the fleet is due to arrive into Punta del Este, click here.
Race 2 began September 15 and will take the 11 teams along a 5195 nm course from Portimão, Portugal to Punta del Este, Uruguay, with their expected arrival between October 12 and 16.
About the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race:
The Clipper Race was established in 1996 by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first person to sail solo non-stop around the world in 1968-69. His aim was to allow anyone, regardless of previous sailing experience, the chance to embrace the thrill of ocean racing; it is the only event of its kind for amateur sailors.
Held biennially, the Clipper 2019-20 Round the World Yacht Race gets underway September 1 for the fleet of eleven identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s. This 12th edition has attracted 688 crew representing 43 nationalities for the 41,000+ nm course. The race finishes on August 8.
The course is divided into 8 legs and 15 individual races, with some of the crew in for the entire circumnavigation while others will do individual legs. The team having the best cumulative score over the entire course will win the Clipper Race Trophy.
The Clipper 2019-20 Race Route:
The fleet departs from London, UK to Portimão, Portugal; across the Atlantic to Punta del Este, Uruguay; the South Atlantic to Cape Town, South Africa; across the Southern Ocean’s Roaring Forties to Fremantle, Western Australia; around to the Whitsundays on the east coast of Australia, back into the Northern Hemisphere to China where teams will race to Qingdao, via Sanya and Zhuhai; across the mighty North Pacific to Seattle, USA; to New York via the famous Panama Canal; to Bermuda and then it’s a final Atlantic crossing to Derry-Londonderry in Northern Ireland; before arriving back to London as fully proven ocean racers.
Source: Clipper Round the World Yacht Race