Please select your home edition
Clipper Ventures
JOIN THE RACE JOIN THE 2017-18 RACE MAGAZINE DOWNLOAD THE OFFICIAL SOUVENIR RACE MAGAZINE Check out the latest photo galleries from the Clipper 2015-16 Race

Clipper 2017-18 Race Leg 1: Liverpool to Punta del Este - Day 26

by Clipper Race 15 Sep 2017 13:12 BST 15 September 2017
Day 20 on Leg 1 of the The Clipper Race 2017-18 © Clipper Ventures

Visit Seattle continues to lead the Clipper Race, maintaining clear water in front of Sanya Serenity Coast, in second, and Unicef in third. Now, just off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, the leaders are on the cusp of being able to re-hoist their spinnakers for the last 1500nM to Punta del Este.

After days of beating upwind around the edge of the South Atlantic High, many of the teams have finally experienced a favourable change in wind angle. The reduction in the heel of the boat is not only more comfortable but means the potential for greater boat speeds. Bob Beggs, Unicef Skipper, said: "The last 24hrs has been full of anticipation, the wind has gradually backed and we are sailing more upright. The spinnaker sheets are run the kite is on deck and team Unicef are like coiled springs waiting for the magic angles to appear but they are tantalisingly just over the visual horizon at present."

On Sanya Serenity Coast the Skipper, Wendy Tuck, reports: "We are now just waiting and waiting for the wind to turn, all eyes are on the Windex at the top of the mast. Visit Seattle is our target, but she is fast and being sailed really well. Bob on Unicef is chasing and I know he will be pushing hard, so there is no relaxing here."

Fourth placed is remaining focused with Qingdao, PSP Logistics and GREAT Britain chasing its stern. Skipper, Conall Morrison, said: "We remain in 4th place with three boats not far behind us. We must keep our game up and can't afford any more tactical mistakes."

The competition between Qingdao, back to fifth, PSP Logistics, currently sixth and GREAT Britain, currently seventh, has been heating up during the past few days of racing. PSP Logistics Skipper, Roy Taylor, reports: "Not only are we locked in battle with the 'Dragon Boat' Qingdao but also with GREAT Britain, who we can see visually on the horizon to leeward. We have not seen either vessel since nightfall on the 20 August (25 days ago) and now we are sharing the same small patch of water on the globe after sailing over 4000nm." Roy adds: "We are still on a lean on a fine reach and it looks like all boats are heading towards the same waypoint, so it should be an exciting end to a great first leg."

Garmin, eighth, is currently holding its position over Liverpool 2018, in ninth, and is maintaining the intensity after a challenging night of shifting wind. Skipper, Gaƫtan Thomas, said: "Changing headsails, constant trimming, and making sure that we are on course. All that with Liverpool 2018 the 'Pink Panther' now hunting us and us hunting the next targets."

It was another fast day of sailing for Dare To Lead, currently tenth, and holding it's more westerly course, the team has seen the sea state gradually improve and the wind move ever so slightly back. Skipper, Dale Smyth, said: "The next couple of days should see us passing Rio de Janeiro and entering a slightly complex ridge of High Pressure before our final run in to Punta del Este. Bring on the spinnakers."

For Greenings and Nasdaq, in eleventh and twelfth respectively, the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint has been tough. With squalls plaguing their progress, and a lumpy confused sea state, both skippers are reticent about their speed. Dan Smith, Greenings Relief Skipper and Deputy Race Director, said: "The wind improved for the second half of our sprint but unfortunately with a few hours left it became squally and changeable dropping our average speed right down. Our average speed ended up being 10.5 knots which I suspect isn't quick enough to win the sprint."

Results of the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint will be announced once all teams have recorded an elapsed time. Points will be awarded to the three boats who recorded the fastest time between 5 degrees S and 10 degrees S.

Though the wind is finally backing Simon Rowell, Clipper Race Meteorologist, reports that: "it won't back particularly smoothly". Results will be variable wind speeds as the fleet crosses from the north side of the ridge to the South. However, the front to the south is being pushed further south by the South Atlantic High, so the fleet should experience more spinnaker time than normal during the final stretch to Punta del Este.

To read all the Skipper reports in full, and also read the Crew Diaries for insightful views into life on board, visit the Clipper Race Team Pages.

To stay up to date with the fleet's positions keep a close eye on the Clipper Race Viewer. All positions correct at time of writing.

Related Articles

Double prize giving celebrations in New York
Following the completion of the penultimate Clipper Race leg Following the completion of the penultimate leg of the circumnavigation, which was made up of two races, the Clipper Race held a double Prize Giving celebration on Saturday night in New Jersey, USA. Posted on 17 Jun
A night of arrivals into city that never sleeps
Clipper Race fleet continued to arrive into New York throughout the night Following the arrival of Race 11 leaders PSP Logistics, Sanya Serenity Coast and GREAT Britain, the Clipper Race fleet continued to arrive into New York throughout the night. Posted on 15 Jun
Clipper Race Founder celebrates 50 years voyage
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston bid farewell to his parents and the comforts of land At 13:45 on June 14, 1968, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston bid farewell to his parents and the comforts of land, not knowing when he would see either again. As has been well told over the years Posted on 14 Jun
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race 11, day 11
PSP Logistics has powered home to take victory The PSP Logistics team, skippered by Matt Mitchell, crossed the finish line off the east coast of the USA at 14:41UTC on 13 June to claim its second win of the 2017-18 edition. Posted on 14 Jun
Queues in Falmouth streets and book sells out
At Knox-Johnston on Seamanship & Seafaring launch Celebrating 50 years since Robin Knox-Johnston set off on his historic voyage from Falmouth, Fernhurst Books published Sir Robin's latest book as part of the Suhaili 50 celebrations and Golden Globe 2018 race. Posted on 14 Jun
PSP Logistics powers through to win race to NY
PSP Logistics has powered to victory in Race 11 of the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race PSP Logistics has powered to victory in Race 11 of the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race; a ten-day 1,800 nautical mile dash from Panama to New York. Posted on 14 Jun
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race 11, day 10
The end of Race 11 is set to be a close one The Clipper Race fleet leading pack has entered what should be the final 24 hours of Race 11: Nasdaq Race from Panama to New York, but finishing positions are still very much up for grabs. Posted on 13 Jun
Queen's Birthday celebrations in Panama
British Embassy hosted an event to celebrate The Queen's Birthday During the recent stopover in Panama, the British Embassy hosted an event to celebrate The Queen's Birthday and its Sport is GREAT Britain week using the Clipper Race team entry GREAT Britain as a focal point. Posted on 13 Jun
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race 11, day 9
Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint is far from over Whilst the entire fleet is yet to complete the sprint, it currently looks as though Nasdaq and Garmin are battling for the maximum three bonus points on offer. Posted on 12 Jun
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race 11, day 8
Final chance for bonus points in the race to New York is underway PSP Logistics has held onto first place for its fourth consecutive day and is enjoying that the breeze is strengthening just in time for the sprint. Posted on 11 Jun