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#ClipperRace - The Greenings team’s grounded Clipper Race yacht has still not been salvaged due to red tape around its sensitive location, as South Africa’s Times Live reports.

The vessel ran aground off the Cape Peninsula on Tuesday 31 October just hours after the fleet set out on the third leg of the round-the-world yacht race.

Two weeks on and the boat is beached near Olifantsbospunt, a protected area within Table Mountain National Park.

That means any efforts to remove the vessel are subject to environmental legislation over potential damage by the heavy equipment that would be required.

Wildfires on the mainland nearby have also delayed action on the yacht, which has had its fuel removed along with loose fittings to avoid pollution.

However, the €6 million boat remains vulnerable to looters, says local salvage diver Gary Mills, who claims government officials should have acted sooner while it was wedged on a nearby reef.

Members of the Greenings crew will be reallocated across the rest of the fleet from the start of the next leg from Fremantle to Sydney next month.

In other Clipper Race news, the Unicef team has been awarded 2 hours and 33 minutes redress by the race committee after their rescue stand-by delay at the start of Race 3.

Final race positions for Race 3: the Dell Latitude Rugged Race will be announced after redress has been applied to the elapsed time.

As of Wednesday morning (15 November) the bulk of the fleet has now passed the halfway mark en route to Fremantle in western Australia.

The sailors on Sanya Serenity Coast have extended their lead to almost 160 nautical miles over nearest rivals PSP Logistics, as fast downwind conditions have been replaced by shifting winds and lighter airs for many teams.

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#ClipperRace - Following the gruelling upwind slog which has dominated much of Race 3: The Dell Latitude Rugged Race, a wind shift overnight has meant that downwind sailing conditions have kicked in for some of the most southerly teams in the Clipper Race fleet.

This was music to the ears of the skipper and crew on board Visit Seattle, which has crept up to third place in the first half of today (Sunday 12 November) after a frustrating wind hole hindered progress yesterday.

Speaking from on board, Skipper Nikki Henderson said: “When the position reports came in yesterday and we saw everyone was moving — even GREAT Britain, which was only about 25 nautical miles north of us – ah it was pretty heart breaking. But nothing we could do except soldier on and try and head south to find more wind.

“In the middle of the night we found it - queue big sigh of relief. Now we are finally, finally, cruising along downwind with a spinnaker up. Here begins some mile crushing in the direction of Fremantle.”

Elsewhere, PSP Logistics and Qingdao still hold the top two positions on the leaderboard. Sanya Serenity Coast also picked up bonus race points for the Scoring Gate yesterday, though they’ve since slipped down to fifth as they hold out for the wind to shift.

Sanya Serenity Coast Skipper Wendy Tuck commented earlier: “It’s hard to think that the boats behind and down south will have kites up now, they will be having a lovely time if the weather file is correct.

“Our time will come soon, but I can’t keep saying just 24 hours more of his on-the-nose stuff!”

For sixth placed Unicef, which is also eagerly anticipating some downwind sailing conditions, morale remains high as they head towards Fremantle. Skipper Bob Beggs said: “At last the wind has freed off sufficiently so that, although we are still on the wind, we can point to our destination. Hurrah!

“Hopefully in a couple of days the good ship Unicef will come upright as the wind comes aft, so we can enjoy some downwind sailing.”

Following Unicef is Liverpool 2018 in seventh, while GREAT Britain, which has benefited from the wind filling and backing at 4am UTC this morning, has zoomed from behind that duo up to fourth place.

Still holding out for the much-needed wind change is skipper Dale Smyth on currently ninth-placed Dare To Lead.

“We were forced right over the top of the scoring gate and we really need this wind to change or we are going to have to go backwards and tack South. We run the risk this far north of not getting Westerlies at all so we keep praying for it to change.”

On board eighth-placed Nasdaq, racing took a back seat this morning to mark Remembrance Sunday. Skipper Rob Graham hoped that “friends and followers around the world will have joined us in this important occasion, as we turn our thoughts to those fallen in conflicts past and present.”

Despite starting Race 3 towards the top of the leaderboard, Garmin holds tenth place today, but is by no means settling at the back of the fleet.

Skipper Gaëtan Thomas commented: “It is quite frustrating to be at the back of the fleet, but it is far from the finish and now is the time to keep focus, not give up.”

And for eleventh placed, skippered by Derry’s Conall Morrison, weather should be backing and building as it progresses towards Fremantle — still trying to make up those lost miles from last weekend’s medevac.

Looking ahead, weather systems may continue to be tricky for the fleet. Clipper Race meteorologist Simon Rowell explains: “There’s a fair amount of wind around between the incoming weather systems, which will be generally going in the right direction, but the progression of the high and then the ridge south of it in two to three days’ time will stretch the fleet’s tactics.”

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#ClipperRace - Life continues at a lean for many teams during the eighth day of Race 3: The Dell Latitude Rugged Race as the Clipper Race fleet slogs it out in tough upwind conditions.

With around 3,400 nautical miles to go until Fremantle, Sanya Serenity Coast maintains its lead over the rest of the fleet, although the distance it had over the other teams has considerably reduced over the last 24 hours.

Skipper Wendy Tuck explains: “Yesterday, the wind was much higher than forecasted … so I decided to shorten sail even more.

“Needless to say, it didn’t increase and a lot of the time we were slightly under powered. Hopefully, we can hold on to our little buffer zone.”

PSP Logistics edged into second place ahead of Dare To Lead, although both teams have been frustrated by a lack of progress and have tacked southwards.

PSP Logistics skipper Matt Mitchell reports: “Although progress isn't great, it's progress none the less. We have a good solid 10 knots boat speed giving us about 7 knots VMG (Velocity Made Good).”

Qingdao, which has played its Joker Card on this race, has climbed to third place, most recently passing Dare To Lead by a hair, and is currently ahead of Liverpool 2018 to the north and GREAT Britain and Visit Seattle to the south.

All of the teams are finding life at an angle a challenge as Qingdao skipper Chris Kobusch reports: “I think I’m not the only one on board who is kind of over it now and looking forward to a change in wind direction to flatten the boat out.

“Besides the heeling we made reasonable good progress over the past 24 hours and are heading more or less in the right direction now.”

Having slipped to seventh earlier today and now standing at eighth, Visit Seattle skipper Nikki Henderson explains: “We have gone rogue — gone south — and now we are praying it pays off.

“The crew are relieved either way though as the wind has eased and therefore so has the lean. We had a tough day and a tough night. A few sail changes in bitterly cold conditions left the gang exhausted.

“Add that to a few bumps and bruises and the relentlessness of living life at 45 degrees and it's really a challenge.”

Skippers on board Unicef (now in fifth) and Nasdaq (trailing up north at 10th) have been lamenting the cold conditions that the teams are experiencing on board.

Nasdaq skipper Rob Graham reports: “Apparently, this is summer in this part of the world! With the sail plan and trim largely fixed, there isn't much to do on deck besides helming, so we have a rotation of crew spending a period below to stay warm.”

Garmin is currently in ninth position, having taken the most northerly route of the teams to the east of, which is currently in 11th having previously diverted to Port Elizabeth for a medevac at the weekend.

The latter boat is experiencing slightly different weather conditions from the rest of the fleet, as Northern Irish skipper Conall Morrison explains.

“Today, we find ourselves beating into a South South-Easterly gale, making no progress towards the finish line on this course. However, such is sailing and we knew the last two days’ progress couldn’t last forever.

“This tack should see us into a patch of more favourable winds tomorrow and so we can tack and point the boat back towards Fremantle.”

Clipper Race meteorologist Simon Rowell predicts strong gusts for overnight tonight (Wednesday 8 Novembver), while there is a high-pressure system approaching the rest of the fleet, making for some interesting tactical decisions.

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#ClipperRace - has departed Port Elizabeth in South Africa this morning (Sunday 5 November) after the successful medevac of crew member Greg Adams, who suffered a suspected broken arm.

The 59-year-old took a fall below deck on Friday (3 November) which prompted a precautionary but necessary diversion for medical treatment from the third leg of the Clipper Race.

Northern Irish skipper Conall Morrison and the onboard medic crew maintained constant contact with ClipperTelemed+ by PRAXES Medical, the races’s remote support physicians, for advice as they rerouted.

The team was met early this morning in Port Elizabeth by Clipper Race officials including deputy race director Tom Way and race office Manager Sarah Hoare, and Adams has now been transferred to hospital for X-rays.

Meanwhile, six new crew members from the grounded Greenings team joined in Port Elizabeth before they set sail to the point at which they ceased racing early this morning to then resume their race to the port of Fremantle, near Perth in western Australia.

Elsewhere, the Clipper Race fleet enjoyed a more settled 24 hours yesterday (Saturday 4 November) after a testing Friday in the Southern Ocean.

The leaderboard was anything but settled, however, as the previously split fleet began to converge south of the rhumb line.

Sanya Serenity Coast is still leading the fleet, more than doubling its advantage over its competitors, and is nearly 120 nautical miles ahead of Liverpool 2018, which has just pipped two miles past PSP Logistics into second place – a remarkable improvement from their sixth position on Friday.

Overnight, Qingdao lost fourth place to Dare To Lead, which has been “slipping along on a flattish sea” according to skipper Dale Smyth.

Visit Seattle holds sixth place, with Garmin 9nm behind in seventh and GREAT Britain hot on their heels by just half a mile as of this morning. Unicef are another 22 miles behind, with Nasdaq trailing some 211 miles from the leaders.

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#ClipperRace - The Clipper Race office has confirmed that the Greenings yacht that ran aground off South Africa’s Cape Peninsula on Tuesday night (31 October) is partially underwater and will take no further part in the 2017-18 race.

As previously reported on, the boat’s interim skipper and crew were evacuated after it ran aground on the western side of the peninsula just hours after starting the third leg from Cape Town to Perth.

Clipper Race officials also confirm that discussions have taken place between interim skipper Andy Woodruff, previously injured skipper David Hartshorn and the crew regarding their future participation in this edition of the race.

A full investigation of the incident is underway, according to the race office. Meanwhile, underwriters have appointed a surveyor to attend the boat today (Thursday 2 November). Following the surveyor’s report, a decision will be made as to whether or not the boat will be salvaged.

In other Clipper Race news, atypically light winds becalmed the majority of the fleet in wind holes on day two, with frustration leading to divided routing that’s split up what had been a tight pack in the first 24 hours out of Cape Town.

First-placed Sanya Serenity Coast is some 30 nautical miles ahead of PSP Logistics, and both have been joined on the rhumb line by third-placed Unicef, making up significant ground after their Greenings rescue stand-by delay late on Tuesday.

South of the line, Dare To Lead is in a battle for fourth with Visit Seattle with barely 1.5nm between them, while just 14nm separates sixth-placed Garmin from the Irish-skippered in 10th — with Liverpool 2018, Qingdao and GREAT Britain in train between them, and Nasdaq catching up another 11nm behind.

The spell of light winds is now passing, and breezes building over the coming days should give teams their first sense of true Southern Ocean conditions.

Clipper Race weather guru Simon Rowell says the next front is due to catch up with the fleet overnight — and with it, the fleet is likely to see wind speeds gust up to 50 knots.

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#ClipperRace - Greenings’ stand-in skipper Andy Woodruf and crew were reportedly doing well after some rest in Cape Town hours after they ran aground on the western side of the Cape Peninsula last night (Tuesday 31 October).

No injuries were reported on board when the boat hit a rocky shoal around 11.40pm local time (9.40pm Irish time) last night, not long after the fleet departed Cape Town on the third leg of the Clipper Race.

However, as a precaution, rescue boats were called to evacuate the crew to shore at Hout Bay.

Unicef, as the closest race vessel to the incident, was initially asked to stand by to assist but was later released to continue racing.

It’s the second major incident to hit the Greenings team after skipper David Hartsthorn suffered a serious hand injury in late August during Race 1 from Liverpool to Uruguay.

The crash will also bring back memories of Team Vestas Wind’s disastrous grounding in the Indian Ocean in the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race. That team’s new incarnation as Vestas 11th Hour Racing is faring much better in the latest edition, last week winning the first leg from Alicante to Lisbon.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Clipper fleet continues their race across the southern Indian Ocean from Cape Town to Perth in Australia.

First across the start line yesterday was Dare To Lead, which had to use all of skipper Dale Smyth’s local knowledge of the waters around Cape Town to move into second place as Sanya Serenity Coast was first to round the first mark in Table Bay.

Dare To Lead has since slipped into third behind PSP Logistics, which had been nipping at their heels all of this morning (Wednesday 1 November).

Sanya Serenity Coast is currently leading the way in The Dell Latitude Rugged Race 3, with a 35 nautical mile advantage on their closest rivals.

Visit Seattle, Garmin, GREAT Britain,, Joker Card players Qingdao and Liverpool 2018 make up the rest of the chasing pack, in order, with only four nautical miles separating the front from the back.

Behind them NASDAQ is some 30nm adrift, while Unicef’s crew have some catching up to do after last night’s rescue detour as they currently lie some 96nm behind the leaders.

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#ClipperRace - It was a close fight right up until the final stretch for ninth-placed and 10th-placed GREAT Britain, who spent much of the Clipper Race's Leg 2: The Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms in a drag race behind the leading pack.

Despite some intense competition from GREAT Britain, managed to pull ahead and forge a 30 nautical mile advantage during the final hours of racing. The team remained in front to cross the line at 13:33:34 UTC and claim ninth place on the leaderboard.

The crew on board, led by Northern Irish skipper Conall Morrison, worked hard and sailed a very consistent race. The team spent nine days in ninth place, peaking on the leader board in sixth position on day six.

Speaking on arrival in Cape Town, Conall said: “Ahoy Cape Town! It’s awesome here; the view, Table Mountain. There is a nice reception here, lots of supporters with orange flags.”

On weather conditions during Race 2, he added: “We had the biggest winds of the race so far. We had 50 knots for about a day and a half and then everything in between.”

Returning home to South Africa, crew member Adam Cristol said: “Great to be back! What a way to return!

“For me [this leg] gave a lot more of the extreme conditions which is pretty immense and what I signed up for, that adventure side of things. The team gelled extremely well again together, we shared some lovely moments on the ocean.”

Just as the sun was setting on Table Mountain, GREAT Britain crossed the finish line at 17:18:56 UTC, becoming the tenth team to finish Race 2 within 24 hours.

GREAT Britain went into the second of thirteen races on top of the overall standings after playing its Joker Card during Race 1 from Liverpool to Punta del Este. However, the team couldn’t recreate that fourth-place result from Uruguay coming into Cape Town. will pick up four race points for ninth place and GREAT Britain will pick up three, but both teams will have to await the results of the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint to find out if it will gain any bonus points for Race 2.

Earlier this week, the Greenings team claimed victory just 17 minutes and 45 seconds ahead of Dare To Lead on Wednesday evening (18 October).

Garmin placed third just over two-and-a-half hours behind the leaders, while Visit Seattle pipped Liverpool 2018 for fourth in the early hours of yesterday (Thursday 19 October).

Qingdao crossed the line shortly after at dawn’s break to finish sixth, Sanya Serenity Coast placed seventh two hours later, and Nasdaq followed before noon in eighth position as the most improved of the fleet.

The next team due to cross the finish line in Cape Town is Unicef, which expects to face some tricky conditions on the final stretch with a view to arriving late tomorrow night (Saturday 21 October).

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#ClipperRace - The first boats in the Clipper Race fleet are expected to arrive ahead of schedule in Cape Town this coming Wednesday (18 October).

After some fast and furious sailing across the South Atlantic — with Greenings notching a whopping 312 nautical miles in a 24-hour period — the first boats passed the half-way point and are now well into the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint portion of Leg 2, the Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms.

Greenings is now sailing under Stealth Mode until 5pm this evening Irish time, which meant Garmin were the first team on the board to cross the western gate and begin the sprint in earnest last night (Friday 13 October).

“We are flying now on the residual swell from the prevailing winds, which can give us some nice little surfs,” said Garmin skipper Gaetan Thomas this morning.

Joker Card players Dare To Lead began their Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint shortly after Garmin, and the boat is in second place on the leaderboard.

However, it hasn’t all gone to plan so far, as Skipper Dale Smyth explains: “As we crossed the line, we had an unfortunate squall, we broached, blew the tack on the Code 3 (heavyweight spinnaker) and recovered it, to our horror, in tatters!

“The scale of repair was to grand for our small onboard machine in the time given before Cape Town. What a disastrous way to enter the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint!

“We limped along all night under white sails and are hoping that conditions will not be too well suited to our Code 3 from here on in.”

Unlike the Scoring Gate, the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint bonus points are awarded to the three teams with the quickest times. The winners therefore will only be announced once the final team has completed the challenge. And understandably, most skippers are keeping their tactics close to their chests.

Elsewhere, there have been some big jumps up the Race 2 leaderboard overnight, with Liverpool 2018 moving from ninth to third, while Qingdao from jumped from 10th place to fifth. Visit Seattle hangs onto fourth place.

Nasdaq is in seventh position, followed by the Northern Irish-skippered and GREAT Britain. Unicef is still attempting to make ground up on the main pack following a spinnaker wrap.

At the back, PSP Logistics is continuing to race hard after being forced to turn back for repairs, with skipper Roy Taylor reporting: “By the next blog, we aim to be less than 3000 nautical miles to run, which all things considered will be a pretty big milestone for us (600 miles in eleven days).”

The bulk of the fleet is expecting to slow down over the next 24 hours as the weak ridge extending from the high behind the pack rotates over the leading teams. The fleet is still expected to have some breeze, but it will be quite fickle, and teams will need to work hard to keep any good speeds consistent.

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#ClipperRace - PSP Logistics is returning to Punta del Este today (Thursday 5 October) after a collision with a whale in the first 24 hours of the Clipper Race’s second leg caused damage to the starboard rudder.

All crew on board are safe and well and there is no risk to the yacht, but race control has instructed the team to motor-sail back to Uruguay for full repairs.

It’s a disaster for PSP Logistics, who were in fifth place in the standings — and second to arrive in Punta del Este — after the first leg from Liverpool was completed a fortnight ago.

Racing remains tight for the top eight teams out of Uruguay, spread out over just 17 nautical miles as of 3pm this afternoon Irish time.

Yesterday’s “windy and wild” start for the Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms saw leaders Dare To Lead play their Joker Card, meaning they will double any points earned on crossing the finish line in Cape Town around two weeks from now.

“We had an awful start in 40 knots of wind and we made some bad mistakes, but actually have ended up in good shape, pushing hard through this wild night,” said Dare To Lead’s skipper — and Capetonian — Dale Smith.

Liverpool 2018 were first across the Leg 2 start line but are pushing to keep second away from Visit Seattle just 2.5nm behind. Greetings, Garmin, GREAT Britain and Sanya Serenity Coast round out the chasing pack.

Qingdao slipped from third down to eight, at which point the fleet spreads out, with NASDAQ some 30nm behind the leaders, Northern Irish-skippered about 6nm behind them in 10th, and UNICEF backmarking almost 60nm from the leaders.

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#ClipperRace - Several teams continue to jostle for position in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race after Sanya Serenity Coast claimed line honours yesterday afternoon (Thursday 21 September), closely followed by PSP Logistics and GREAT Britain who arrived second and third respectively into Punta del Este late at night.

Qingdao and Dare To Lead were the fourth and fifth teams to cross the line in the early hours of this morning (Friday 22 September) and were greeted by a warm welcome from supporters despite the wet weather., skippered by Northern Irish sailor Conall Morrison, was this morning arriving into Punta del Este after crossing the line in sixth place at 8.52am Irish time, and only 21 minutes separated Garmin in seventh and Liverpool 2018 in eighth place a little later in the morning.

Unicef is expected to be the ninth team to cross the line over the next few hours. Skipper Bob Beggs said: “The time for reflection will come later after a shower, a steak, and possibly a beer or two. But one thing’s for sure - team Unicef can be proud of their achievements.”

Visit Seattle is currently in 10th place after spending another day in a wind hole, but the team is now moving again and expected to arrive into Punta del Este later today.

Greenings is on course to be the 11th team to cross the line on Saturday, but the redress awarded by the race committee, for the forced diversion to Porto for a replacement skipper will still need to be taken in to account.

Nasdaq, in 12th position, is making good progress and is expected to arrive on Sunday. Skipper Rob Graham said: “Nasdaq managed to maintain good speed throughout yesterday with both watches making small adjustments to sail trim to get the best out of the boat and the wind.

“We also managed to point at our destination, which to non-sailors sounds obvious (why would you point anywhere else?) but any sailor will tell you that it doesn't seem to happen very often.”

Clipper Race meteorologist Simon Rowell has informed the remaining teams that are racing that a front is moving up the coast with the low heading out to sea.

“It’ll carry on being a rather cloudy and squally one too for the southern boats, always more incentive to get through it quicker,” he said.

As the low moves out to sea it should pass ahead of the northern boats, so all teams should finish by the close of the weekend.

Meanwhile, Conall Morrison has posted his final Leg 1 skipper’s update after crossing the finish line this morning:

Well here we are.

As I type at the Nav Station, we have 26 miles to go to the finish line, quite apt... a marathon.

Randel Ransom has captured a few observations about how we have all found the journey. For me, it’s such a big thing. The longest I have spent at sea before was 16 days, so I’ve doubled that figure. We have gelled as a team over the past month and I must say I am very lucky to have such willing, talented, and capable crew onboard.

We have five crew-members leaving in Punta del Este:

Heather Kemp, who has turned out to be what Tony Dickinson would call, an evolutionist. Also, a speed demon helming under spinnaker - I don't know if I would get in a car with her driving.

Tony Dickinson – a proper gentleman and good fun guy to have onboard. He is very inquisitive and was handy with all of our ropework. Arts and crafts club will be missing an important member.

Randel Ransom – great guy and likes to have an overview of how things are going onboard. Also a keen helmsman. Great blog today.

Henri Micheron – big kind-hearted man, always smiling and happiest behind the helm. We will be missing a great helmsman.

Seamus Fenlon – he's a great laugh now, handy on the helm, and mast-splicer at this stage. He shared all of the things that he wanted to do on this trip and was very happy to be woken early yesterday morning to stand on deck and watch an Albatross glide over the South Atlantic.

That's all from me now. So many things to get sorted for arrival. Thank you all for your support, for reading the blogs, and for the encouraging emails that you have been sending :)


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