Displaying items by tag: Cork Clipper boat in the Clipper 0910 Round the World Yacht Race
Cork has made a mediocre start to Race 10 from Jamaica to New York as the latest stage of the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race gets under way. The team was sixth to cross the start line and held their position around the first mark and as they headed for the Windward Passage between Cuba and Haiti.
Cape Breton Island’s eagle got a flying start ahead of the rest of the ten-strong fleet. In eight to ten knots of breeze from the east and a very calm sea state, Uniquely Singapore was next to cross the start line, followed by Team Finland and Spirit of Australia. Jamaica Lightning Bolt was mid pack, followed by Cork, Ireland and Hull & Humber, with Edinburgh Inspiring Capital, California and Qingdao completing the order.
California had crossed the line ahead of the starting signal, so were forced to go around again to exonerate themselves, while Qingdao misjudged the amount of time they needed to get to the line from their training session and were last to cross, 20 minutes after the signal was sounded at 1410 (1910 GMT).
At the mark, Team Finland had gained ground, tacking up the course to round ahead of Cape Breton Island, Spirit of Australia followed the Canadian yacht and Uniquely Singapore steamed in ahead of Jamaica Lightning Bolt, leaving the home team in their dirty air, to good natured shouts of protest from home team supporters close by.
The 1420-mile race to New York, the latest stage of the 35,000-mile circumnavigation, will take them past the island of Cuba and up the east coast of North America, following the Gulf Stream current.
Preparing to leave Port Antonio where the fleet has been enjoying Jamaican hospitality since their arrival last Tuesday, the skipper of the Irish boat, Hannah Jenner, said, “We’re all set, the boat’s looking much better, she’s a bit lighter and everyone’s had more time on her. We’re looking forward to getting going – slightly worried about the light winds but we’ll see, you never know. We’ve obviously got the home port coming up so we’ve got to get the boat up to speed by Kinsale so we can get a good result in the race there.”
The Clipper fleet is due to arrive in Kinsale from 1 July before moving on to Cork city during the eight day stopover in Ireland.
Double world record holder, Usain Bolt, after whom the Jamaican entry is named, sent a message to the teams during the stopover. He said, “Sorry I couldn’t be here to welcome you personally to the most incredibly beautiful paradise in the world but I have some work to do in China. Like you, I am also on a round the world mission, just a little faster though – the way I like to do things! Big respect to all of you competing in this incredible race. In fact, ‘nuff respect, as we say in Jamaica. You are all champions. So I guess it makes sense that you would be here in Jamaica, the land of champions.”
Joff Bailey, Race Director said, “We’ve had a great stopover in Jamaica and everyone is looking forward to this race. The skippers are all fired up for this last leg, pushing for the last points that will secure the podium positions. The winds will be light for the first part of the race but once the fleet gets north of the Bahamas it will be a great sail up to New York.”
The ten internationally-backed ocean racing yachts slipped their moorings in Errol Flynn Marina at 10am local time (1500 GMT) and sailed out of the harbour past Port Antonio’s iconic orange and white lighthouse where local residents, enjoying the Labour Day holiday, were waiting to wave off the boats.
After a training session the teams gathered near the start line at Folly Point Lighthouse, the Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard cutter, HMJS Cornwall, at the other end of the start line.
Joff said, “I’d like to thank Captain Batchelor and the crew of HMJS Cornwall for their assistance and hospitality today, as well as the crew on Southern Cross who did a great job of holding position as the windward mark while the yachts passed within feet of them.”
During the short stopover in Jamaica the Member of Parliament for East Portland, Dr Donald Rhodd, attended the prize-giving ceremony and said, “We are very humbled that this prestigious event has come to our shores. Your sportsmanship must be applauded as well as your levels of professionalism with which you execute your craft. I wish you success as you travel to your next port of call. Our people in general and tourism in particular have been the beneficiaries of your short stay with us. I hope the warmth and hospitality here have helped to strengthen the bonds of friendship amongst our peoples and I’m sure you will return. We will welcome you again with open arms.”
He also had a message for the rest of the crews: “I’d like to remind you the honourable Lightning Bolt, Usain Bolt, doesn’t come second in a race! So for all of you out there, watch out, he’s coming for you!”
The fleet is due to arrive in New York between 2 and 3 June.
With 93 points, Spirit of Australia currently leads the overall standings in the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race, 18.7 points ahead of Team Finland, with Jamaica Lightning Bolt just three-tenths of a point behind them in third place. Cape Breton Island is currently fourth overall. Five races remain in the 14-race series, which will finish on 17 July when the ten yachts race up the Humber to the city of Hul