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Hull & Humber leads Clipper fleet to Hawaii

by Clipper Event media on 9 Mar 2008
Durban Downwind Surfing in F8 winds - Clipper 07-08 Clipper Ventures PLC © . http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com
“What an amazingly exciting race this is turning out to be,” says Joff Bailey, Race Director. “The surfing and speeds that the teams are achieving is equalled only in the Southern Ocean.”

As the close racing continues, Hull & Humber has managed to eek out a small lead over their nearest rivals New York in the past 24-hours. Skipper Danny Watson likened the conditions in the Pacific Ocean to being on a theme park
ride, “It looks like the roller coaster ride has slowly entered the docking station,” said the Hull & Humber skipper. “We have written to Alton Towers with a new concept ride - THE PUMMELING PACIFIC! The conditions are tiring for all but absolutely exhilarating at times.”

Joff Bailey says, “The one-design Clipper fleet is proving again that having identical boats is the only way to deliver close and exciting ocean yacht racing. Add to this the high level of training that all crews receive and it is a recipe for success and something that the wider sailing community should be proud of.”

During the night Qingdao and Uniquely Singapore had to revert to the racing rules as they came so close to each other that one of them had to give way. Later on that same evening it happened again as they gybed back across each
other’s track. “This is a big ocean, you would have thought there would be enough room for us all!” exclaimed the skipper of the Chinese team, Marcus Cholerton-Brown. “We didn't expect to be calling starboard on another Clipper in the middle of the Pacific.”

The Race Director believes that the very close battle for the third spot between these two teams and Glasgow: Scotland with style Clipper is the one to watch. With only two miles separating them at 0600 GMT, Joff says, “With
lighter winds forecast for the next 24 hours will skipper Hannah Jenner and her team, known amongst the fleet as the best light wind team, once again prevail?

“Jamaica has been the first team to be stung by these lighter winds that are coming from the west, but they should also get the stronger winds first whilst the others wallow around in approximately 5 knots of breeze later today.”

westernaustralia2011.com’s progress is nothing but astonishing, managing to cover over 150 nautical miles in the last 24 hours with only half a mast. Reports from the boat suggest spirits on board are high as they make better than predicted progress towards Midway Island for fuel and then the last run into Oahu.

The yachts will be berthed in Ala Wai harbour, Honolulu, during the stopover in Hawaii. Updated estimated arrival times will be published online at www.clipperroundtheworld.com as the fleet nears its destination.

POSITIONS AT 0600 GMT, 8 MARCH 2008

1. Hull & Humber: Distance to Finish (DTF) 1733
2. New York: DTF 1758 (Distance to Leader +25)
3. Uniquely Singapore: DTF 1791 (+58)
4. Glasgow: Scotland with style Clipper: DTF 1792 (+59)
5. Qingdao: DTF 1793 (+60)
6. Nova Scotia: DTF 1811 (+78)
7. Durban 2010 and Beyond: DTF 1817 (+62)
8. Liverpool 08: DTF 1827 (+94)
9. Jamaica: DTF 1999 (+266)
10. westernaustralia2011.com: DTF 2234 (+501)

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Berths are currently available for the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race. For more information call +44 (0) 2392 526000 or email oceanracer(at)clipperroundtheworld.com
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