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Cork Gets Good Week in the Clipper

10th November 2009
Cork Gets Good Week in the Clipper
With just over 500nm to the finish in Cape Town, Cork has secured a strong lead over the last four days with 72nm separating them from second place Hull & Humber. It is anticipated that they will arrive in Cape Town on Friday 13th and with some luck on this inauspicious date Cork should secure their first gun in the round the world race. 

• 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.

Published in Clipper Race Team

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About the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race

The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race is undoubtedly one of the greatest ocean adventures on the planet, also regarded as one of its toughest endurance challenges. Taking almost a year to complete, it consists of eleven teams competing against each other on the world’s largest matched fleet of 70-foot ocean racing yachts.

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. Around 40 per cent of crew are novices and have never sailed before starting a comprehensive training programme ahead of their adventure.

This unique challenge brings together everyone from chief executives to train drivers, nurses and firefighters, farmers, airline pilots and students, from age 18 upwards, to take on Mother Nature’s toughest and most remote conditions. There is no upper age limit, the oldest competitor to date is 76.

Now in its twelfth edition, the Clipper 2019-20 Race started from London, UK, on 02 September 2019.


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