Please select your home edition
Edition
SW newsletters (top)
JOIN THE RACE JOIN THE 2019-20 RACE MAGAZINE DOWNLOAD THE OFFICIAL SOUVENIR RACE MAGAZINE Check out the latest photo galleries from The Clipper Race
UNICEF ABOUT UNICEF

The Clipper Race Leg 1: The Atlantic Trade Winds - Race 1, Day 7

by The Clipper Race 9 Sep 2019 09:03 PDT 9 September 2019
Punta del Este - The Clipper Race Leg 1 - Race 1, Day 7 © Clipper Race

Punta del Este will be racing to its home port on a huge high after claiming a win in the opening race to Portimão in Portugal.

Despite being as low as sixth in the standings earlier in the day, the Spanish Skipper of Punta del Este Skipper, Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez, used his local knowledge and, along with his crew, navigated the light winds off Portugal with precision to cross the finish line in first place at 00:45:22 UTC.

Says Sir Robin Knox-Johnston: "This has been a lesson in land-sea breezes. As the land cools off at night, the water remains warm. So you are looking for that breeze that develops between the land and the sea. It probably goes out a couple of miles, but it's well worth looking for. And that's obviously what the winning boat found. They came creeping by, inside the others, and here they are in first place."

It has been an incredibly successful race overall for Punta del Este. As well as the eleven points for the win, the team will also add three bonus points to its overall tally after setting the fastest time in the Ocean Sprint.

Punta del Este Skipper Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez said: "It has been a bit of a challenging one but it feels amazing. My team has worked so hard and I am just ecstatic, just over the moon.

"I think the moment was when we went through Finisterre. We pushed ourselves so hard day and night, day and night. We won the Ocean Sprint and that kept us motivated and focused."

Another team that saw success in the light conditions was Dare To Lead, who snared second place after finishing one hour and three seconds behind Punta del Este at 01:45:25 UTC.

Dare To Lead Skipper Guy Waites said: "It was a long, long slog today. Definitely felt like the longest day of the whole week.

"It was a great effort by the team and my mate Hugues was fantastic as well. We put a huge amount of effort in for the finish and second place is very much deserved."

Despite leading for much of the race, Qingdao had to settle for third place after falling victim to the dying breeze off the southern coast of Portugal.

Skipper Chris Brooks said: "It was epic, hard work. We tried everything we could and it was just mother nature in the end that didn't allow it to happen. It's great to come third, I think it is a good foundation for Qingdao to go off and win the race."

But while Qingdao missed out on the win, the team is still looking very good in the standings. As well as collecting nine race points for third, Qingdao also earned three bonus points in Race 1 after being the first team across the Scoring Gate.

Skipper Chris added: "Having been the first boat to score points in the race and now coming second overall, we just want to work on that and improve it and be first by the time we arrive in Punta del Este!"

The Marina de Portimão literally rolled out the red carpet for the top three teams, with the crew treated to a well-earned VIP drinks reception. As well as being able to enjoy the sun, sand and surf the Algarve is famous for, Portimão will be putting on a show, with wine tastings, museum tours, and a beachside pool Prizegiving party organised for the coming week. For more information about Portimão, see the Host Port Page.

The next stop after Portimão is the Uruguayan city, Punta del Este. After crossing their first ocean of the circumnavigation - the North Atlantic - the teams are due to arrive in the 'St Tropez of South America' between the 12th and 15th of October.

View live race standings here.

Related Articles

The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 9
The Doldrums Corridor: the calmer part of the race with windless waters? As the fleet approach north of the Doldrums Corridor, the teams reflect on the decision taken to motor and the tactical advantages and potential disadvantages to the timing of the decision. Posted today at 11:59 am
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 8
Busy days and invisible bungee cords It was another busy day for the Clipper Race fleet as it continued its way through the Doldrums Corridor and across the Solomon Sea. Posted on 27 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 7
Race 6 continues to thrill Most teams report being in close proximity to each other and this has helped momentum when it comes to monitoring the competition and galvanising teams to push hard to improve their position in the race standings. Posted on 26 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 6
The slow conditions continue to frustrate Well, it has been an extremely busy 24 hours for the fleet as they sail into Day 6 of Race 6: The Sanya Tropical Paradise Race. Posted on 25 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 5
The tussle at the top of the leaderboard continues The steady weather conditions have continued to affect the fleet as they sail into day five of Race 6: The Sanya Tropical Paradise. Posted on 24 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 4
A slow and tricky beginning A familiar sight at the top of the leaderboard with Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam and Qingdao currently holding the top two spots respectively with WTC Logistics hot on their sterns in third. Posted on 23 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 3
So, what is a Le Mans start? The Clipper Race fleet has made its way through the beautiful Great Barrier Reef as they navigate away from Australia and start their route to China with the first stop being Sanya in Race 6 of Leg 5: The Sanya Tropical Paradise Race. Posted on 22 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 5 Race 6 preview
Sanya Tropical Paradise Race from Australia to China The Whitsundays has delivered a feast for the senses, from the azure blue waters to the stunning natural landscapes of coast and islands, dotted with secluded beaches. Posted on 21 Jan
Clipper Ventures set to return to boot Düsseldorf
Ocean health to take centre stage This citizen-science driven project, which empowers Clipper Race Crew to contribute to important global scientific research, has seen four Clipper Race teams deploy data-transmitting buoys along some of the most remote latitudes of the global race route Posted on 16 Jan
The Clipper Race Leg 4 - Race 5, Day 20
GoToBermuda received a warm welcome into the Whitsundays A strong start from Fremantle on the 22 December put Skipper David 'Wavy' Immelmann, First Mate Fabian Fisahn and the 13 crew members in good stead for the 3,415 nautical mile race which took them around three quarters of Australia. Posted on 11 Jan
MBW newsletters (top)