In the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, a South Coast yachtsman chosen to compete, also has been selected as the skipper for the Jamaican yacht entry for the second time.
Pete Stirling (48), one of twelve professional skippers chosen after a rigorous selection process, will lead his team of amateur sailors around the globe during the 40,000-mile, 11 month endurance challenge.
Pete, from Titchfield, returns to the race after skippering Jamaica Lighting Bolt in the Clipper 09-10 Race, he explains:
'I’m absolutely delighted to be chosen as skipper for the Jamaican entry for the second time. I had a fantastic time during the 09-10 edition of the Clipper Race, and made some great friends, which is one reason why I want to do it again.'
During the Clipper 09-10 Race Jamaica Lightning Bolt missed out on a podium finish by just six points and finished in fifth place overall. With a brand new matched fleet of 12, 70ft ocean racers competing in the 13-14 Clipper Race, Pete has set his sights on achieving a top-three podium finish in what will be the ninth edition of the race.
'My goal is to achieve an overall podium position, and return home with the happiest crew. We will live together, compete together and hopefully create lots of fantastic memories along the way.'
For the fourth time in the history of the race, the fleet will visit picturesque Errol Flynn Marina in Port Antonio. The Clipper Race was founded in 1996 by sailing legend Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail single-handed, non-stop around the world in 1968-69, said:
'I know that we have chosen an exceptional group of people to undertake the task of leading our crews around the world. With Pete’s experience and expertise I know he will do a brilliant job.'
'This group of skippers can look forward to being the first to race on the new fleet of Clipper 70s, but the focus remains the same as in previous races with the emphasis on motivating the crew and maintaining their safety while remaining competitive in all conditions.' he added.
The Jamaica Tourist board will showcase Jamaica as one of the most desirable visitor destinations on the planet during the 40,000-mile race. A creative programme of events and activities are being planned to mark the arrival of the Jamaica yacht into the race’s various ports-of-call. By targeting Jamaica’s key tourism markets across the globe, the race will help bring Destination Jamaica back under the international spotlight.
The Clipper Race will depart London on first September and will return there the following July after racing more than 40,000 miles around the world, visiting 14 ports on six continents. For more information visit Clipper Round the World.
by Ruth Harrington
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12:48 PM Fri 26 Jul 2013GMT
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