• Cork leading Race 3 from Rio to Capetown in the Clipper Round the World Race
• Only 532nm to the finish (eta Friday 13th November)
• Cork records the highest speed at 24.7 knots
• Cork scores a point and penalised a point in a 24-hour period
Above: Alan Moss ('Mossy') on the bow
The Clipper 09-10 fleet left Rio on 27th October and have experienced the toughest conditions they’ve faced so far in this edition of the race. The yachts have endured huge pressure, the weather generating hundreds of tons of load on the mast and rigging and battering sails and crew alike.
Cork scored a point late last week as they rounded the scoring gate in third place however their celebrations were short-lived when the Race Committee announced a one point penalty.
The punishment followed their use of the engine during Race 2 from La Rochelle to Rio de Janeiro. The team switched on and engaged their engine during the race in order to avoid a fishing fleet at a time when they were untangling a major spinnaker wrap. Skipper, Richie Fearon, made the decision on safety grounds and the time under motor was declared on their Race Declaration on arrival in Rio de Janeiro. However the team were penalised for failing to inform the Race Office when the incident occurred.
On a more positive note, crew member Keith Hale had held the highest speed on the boat since the race start – 19.9 knots and that record had stood for some weeks. Until this week when Alan Moss recorded 24.7 knots, at night surfing the boat down a huge wave. According to Alan ‘the whole boat was covered in foam and water and skipper Richie Fearon who was next to me on deck said “Blimey – that was quick Mossy!” as he ran to check the speed data’.
Over 40% of the crew onboard Cork Clipper have no previous sailing experience and none of the crew has experienced legs of this duration before so how are the team bonding? According to Kerry native, Jacqui Browne ‘Talking, laughing, joking, teasing and being able to take a teasing are all part of our winning communications strategy. All of this banter goes on of course whilst racing our Cork Clipper aiming for best speeds on a good course. Some of our masters in the gift of the gab include Sean Coote, Dave Paton, Mike Lewis, Kevin Austin and Alan Moss who found their gift after kissing the Blarney Stone during the crew visit to Cork last August.’
When Cork arrives in Cape Town, they will work with Tourism Ireland to promote the Cork stopover of the Clipper Round the World Race in July 2010 and promotion of the island of Ireland as a tourism destination through a number of trade and media initiatives.
Not a bad week after all and even better to look forward to if they hold their lead in to Cape Town.