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Qingdao honours tradition in Clipper 2019-20 Race yacht branding

by Morgan Kasmarik 3 Apr 17:00 BST
Qingdao and the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race inspired the branding for the yacht © Clipper Ventures

The sixteen year partnership between Qingdao and the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race has inspired the branding for the yacht which will represent China's Sailing City in the 2019-20 edition of the global ocean challenge.

The Clipper 2019-20 Race will be the eighth consecutive time Qingdao has featured as a team and destination, with the city the longest serving Host Port and Team Partner in the event's history.

For race number eight, the distinctive red hull and golden dragon will once again be the focus of the design, which will be seen by millions of people around the world as the Clipper Race fleet of eleven yachts race to 13 ports across six continents. The teams will arrive at Qingdao's Olympic Sailing Centre in early 2020.

It took two experts approximately 18 hours to brand the 70-foot ocean racing yacht. The Qingdao yacht, like the other ten in the Clipper Race fleet, was built in Qingdao and has already completed three circumnavigations of the globe.

The Qingdao team experienced great success in the previous 2017-18 edition of the race, with the team featuring on the podium four times - including winning the race across the mighty North Pacific Ocean from its home port of Qingdao to Seattle - to finish third on the overall leaderboard.

More than 700 crew members, representing 40 different countries, including China, have already signed up for the Clipper 2019-20 Race, which is due to begin in the UK this summer. The crew will spend almost a year racing 40,000 nautical miles around the world, crossing six oceans along the way. What makes this challenge all the more incredible is that all the crew are non-professional sailors.

The Clipper Race is the only event which trains everyday people to be ocean racers. Among the crew will be nine people representing Qingdao - one who will complete the full circumnavigation and eight who will race in one of the eight legs that make up the overall race. The Qingdao Ambassadors were selected following a tough trial earlier this year and the group has already begun the four weeks of compulsory on-the-water training at the Clipper Race Training Headquarters in Portsmouth in the UK.

The Qingdao Ambassador programme is designed to encourage more Chinese people to learn about sailing and also promote Qingdao to the world. Former ambassadors include Guo Chuan and Vicky Song, the first Chinese man and woman to sail around the world.

Qingdao is one of three Chinese cities featuring as a Host Port and Team Partner in the Clipper 2019-20 Race. Sanya is returning for its second consecutive race, while Zhuhai will make its debut. The addition of Zhuhai and the recent creation of Clipper China, a Clipper Race sister-company which is building sailing schools across China, is testament to the 16 year partnership between the Clipper Race and Qingdao.

Being an ambassador is not the only way to be involved and join the Clipper Race. There are still limited opportunities for people to sign up as a crew member in the Clipper 2019-20 Race and experience the adventure of a lifetime. Information on how to sign up is available on clipperroundtheworld.com.

The Clipper 2019-20 Race Route

Starting from the UK later this summer, the Clipper 2019-20 Race route will see the teams race from the UK, across the Atlantic to South America; the South Atlantic to South Africa; across the Southern Ocean's Roaring Forties to Western Australia; around to East Australia, back into the Northern Hemisphere to China where teams will race to Qingdao, via Sanya and Zhuhai; across the mighty North Pacific to West Coast USA; to East Coast USA via the famous Panama Canal; and then it's a final Atlantic crossing; before arriving back to the UK as fully proven ocean racers.

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