At the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, the gusty, fast and wet conditions are continuing to prove extra challenging for crew, requiring everyone to exercise extreme safety cautions. Many skippers continue to praise crew on their bravery and perseverance in the rough weather.
Race 4 day 4 - Extra challenging for crew,
Vicky Ellis, skipper of Switzerland, explained the conditions crew have been facing: 'In gales, the wind whistles through the rig, in storms it screams, but this wind howled a roar that sent a chill right through you. The wind alone physically shifted crew off their seat on the deck so they have been using double clips to anchor themselves in place. ‘It’s just like summer in Scotland,’ I told the crew cheerfully.'
Following yesterday’s reported injuries, Derry~Londonderry~Doire has made the decision to divert to Port Elizabeth (expected to arrive 2200 local time) to transfer round the world crew member, Michelle Porter as a precautionary measure. Mission Performance has now resumed racing following the successful transfer of their injured crew member, David Griffin.
Commenting on the tough start to Race four, Clipper Race Director Justin Taylor said: 'This leg has historically been a tough one for the Clipper Round the World Race. As the yachts plunge down into the Southern Ocean and the Roaring Forties they will begin to experience the full force of nature. Races one, two and three are the best training ground to prepare the crews for Race 4 but of course, in addition to this is the comprehensive training that each of the crew undergoes before they set off. This, coupled with the focus that the Clipper Race and its highly experienced skippers have for safety, helps to reduce the incidence of crew injuries but alas these are inevitable.
It would only be the naive to think that we could eliminate all the risk of sailing in the harshest of environments. In fact it is because we can’t that crew elect to go down into the Southern Ocean in the first place. To quote Hilaire Belloc, 'There, sailing the sea, we play every part of life; control, direction, effort, fate; and there we can test ourselves and know our state.'
At 1100 UTC, the current race standings see Qingdao leading the fleet (3871 miles to finish) with Henri Lloyd in second place (3957.3) and OneDLL (3990.3) third