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Clipper Race 2: Hundred Years Cup - A true fiesta for Punta del Este prizegiving

by Clipper Round the World Race 19 Oct 2023 09:46 BST
Top of the leaderboard it's Yacht Club Punta Del Este - Race 2: Hundred Years Cup © Clipper Race

A Punta del Este prize-giving extravaganza celebrated Race 2: Hundred Years Cup. The highly anticipated event brought together Clipper Race crew, supporters, Yacht Club Punta del Este members and Clipper Race Officials to honour the success of Leg 1 and crown the winners of Race 2.

Following the intense first ocean crossing of the competition, where teams made the epic5,300nm passage across the Atlantic from Puerto Sherry, Spain, it was proud and smiling faces all around at the beautiful Yacht Club Punta del Este clubhouse.

Opening the ceremony, Clipper Race Director Mark Light said "What an amazing race! It was superb to follow on the Race Viewer and it had spectators gripped until the very end.?Fast and exciting racing, endless sail changes and gybes, and the inevitable windless areas which were hot and frustrating.?Various tactics played out as teams navigated their way through the doldrums, and on to the final stretch with the home team pushing all the way to the end. And what a nail-biting finish!"

It's the third time the Uruguayan city has appeared as a Host Port on the race circuit, with Yacht Club Punta del Este yet again putting on a prestigious event for the teams, with the added excitement of celebrating the yacht club's 100th anniversary.

Clipper Ventures Managing Director Laura Ayres, who formally opened the evenings proceedings, said: "On behalf of the entire Clipper Race, I would like to extend our sincerest thanks to our?hosts at the Yacht Club Punta del Este who have worked tirelessly to make our third stopover here an incredible event.?You have provided such a warm welcome to our international Race Crew and their visiting friends and families already."

The first award of the evening went to Jessica Fletcher of Zhuhai, who was proudly announced as the winner of the Leg 1 Media Prize. This award celebrates crew members who have captured images, videos or written blogs that give a true sense of the environment and conditions experienced offshore.?

Jessica's incredible video reflected beautifully on the magic of life at sea on board Zhuhai throughout Leg 1. Other highly commended entries went to Timo Wassermeier on Qingdao and Andreas Zerr on Washington, DC for their amazing images captured, and to Elisa Reiterer on UNICEF for her beautiful blog written about crossing the equator sailing under the stars.

Jessica was presented the Leg 1 Media Prize pennant by Gustavo Gonzalez Piedras from the yacht club.

A new edition to the Clipper Race prize-giving formalities, the Yacht Club Punta del Este (YCPE) was awarded the first ever Impact Prize. The Impact Prize recognises any person or entity who has had an impact upon the Clipper Race ecosystem in any capacity.

YCPE was awarded for its diverse programme of events which incorporates sustainability, community outreach to the sailing school and beyond, and a school's programme which builds year on year. At least 500 school children stepped on board a Clipper 70 in 2019, and over 750 are expected to do so this edition.

Chris Rushton, Managing Director of Clipper Ventures presented the award to Yacht Club Punta del Este Commodore Juan Etcheverrito.

Next was an official update on the fundraising taking place for Charity Partner UNICEF, and it was a huge congratulations to the UNICEF team that has already managed to achieve its fundraising target of £30,000. This is a result of some amazing work from the team whose tireless fundraising has been a massive contribution to the £110,692 raised on this edition so far.

PSP Logistics and its Mi-Tie Miles fundraising challenge was then named the Charity Champion for Leg 1 for the team's incredible pre-race fundraising efforts. The Mi-Tie Miles challenge saw crew members tasked with completing a total of 1,800 miles by natural or human powered means - a fantastic way of engaging the whole team and an impressive £8,705 raised for UNICEF before the race had even begun.

Mark Hagan, the top fundraiser for the initiative, was welcomed to the stage to receive the award from Horacio Madorno.

Then, it was over to the highly anticipated racing results. The Scoring Gate results, which were announced earlier in Race 2, saw Perseverance awarded the top three points, PSP Logistics two points and Yacht Club Punta del Este, one point.

However, it has been a long wait for teams to discover who would take the bonus points from the Race 2: Hundred Years Cup Ocean Sprint- the first Ocean Sprint of the circumnavigation. The results were as follows...

In 1st?place - Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam
In 2nd place - Bekezela
And in 3rd?place - UNICEF

And onto podium placing, it was third place PSP Logistics who were called to the stage to claim its winner pennant from Sergio Dalchiele and Gustavo Gonzalez-Piedras. Skipper Mike Miller, AQP Lottie Wade and the PSP Logistics team enjoyed their first visit to the podium on this edition, after arriving into port third, as well as taking two extra bonus points in the Scoring Gate.

Next up to the stage was Ineke Van der Weijden, and AQP Joss Creswell with Perseverance. The team arrived in 2nd place on Race 2 and topped up its points in the Scoring Gate. Perseverance received its winning pennant from Yacht Club Punta del Este's Vice Commodore Daniel Silecki and Honorary Secretary Sally Ann Cooper.

Topping the Race 2 leader board was Yacht Club Punta del Este. It was an emotional homecoming from Skipper Nano Antia, who sailed the team into his hometown in first place and breaking the decade long curse by being the first boat to arrive first at its home port since the 2013-14 ediiton. Huge cheers and well-deserved celebrations on stage for Nano, AQP Angus Whitehead and the Yacht Club Punta del Este team. The Mayor of Moldonado - Enrique Antia, Commodore Juan Etcheverrito and Luis Gold on behalf of Urufarma?presented the team with its winning pennant.

To finish the evening, Race Crew who will be leaving the race after completing Leg 1, the first of eight legs, were called to the stage to celebrate their remarkable achievements.

In his closing statements, Mark said "What an adventure you have had, two races, 6,500nm, fantastic sailing conditions, and an equator crossing. Thank you for playing a part in our Clipper Race."

As Race 2: Hundred Years Cup officially closes, the Race Standings are as follows:

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