Please select your home edition
Edition
Clipper Ventures
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 4 - Race 5, Day 12: Snakes and ladders

by Clipper Round the World Race 3 Jan 06:46 PST 3 January 2020
Punta del Este captured on the stern of Dare To Lead - The Clipper Race Leg 4 - Race 5, Day 12 © Clipper Race

"Well we are a lot happier on board, there is finally wind!" exclaimed Josh Stickland, Skipper of Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam on the twelfth day of the 3,400nm Race 5 from Fremantle to the Whitsundays.

However, that is not the only thing the team has to be happy about, having navigated the wind hole best, Josh and his team have carved out a 55nm lead over now second placed Imagine your Korea.

As predicted, the high pressure system, light winds and East Australian Current have shaken up the leaderboard. In the last 24hrs, Qingdao and WTC Logistics to the east of the leading pack, have both made gains, whereas GoToBermuda and Zhuhai, opting to head further inshore with the hope of sailing around the edge of the windhole, have slipped down to fourth and fifth respectively.

Qingdao skipper, Chris Brooks reflected: "The high pressure system has brought everyone back together and slowed progress for many on the sprint. It will realign the fleet in such away that it's almost a completely new race start. The fleet is spread finely across an east west divide. North and south, there is now only tens of miles between us and the fleet."

He added: "At this stage even suggesting something as broadly as which side of the course would be favoured in terms of pressure is an assumption too far. It's obviously a very complicated system right now to predict."

Across the fleet, teams have been working hard to try an eek out every knot of boat speed. Guy Waites, Skipper of Dare To Lead, said: "The 300 nautical mile game of snakes and ladders has begun with a little bit of everything but not a lot of wind. In the past 24 hours, we have sailed every upwind and downwind angle either port or starboard, Windseeker, Code 1, Yankee 1 and Staysail from zero to fifteen knots. The team have responded well to the challenges of light wind sailing with a "heavy" emphasis on weight distribution, mostly low side!"

The leaders also need to keep an eye on Punta del Este, Visit Sanya, China and Unicef. As the race is being run on elapsed time, they will need to factor in the 48hrs difference in start times. Punta del Este has already overtaken Dare To Lead and in the middle in the Dell Latitude Rugged Ocean Sprint, is extremely determined, with Skipper of Punta del Este, Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez, reporting: "We are a crew motivated and hungry to do well.

"Everybody is working hard and ready to give the extra mile for the greater good. The fleet leaders are getting closer and closer, we are in a hunting mood! Really challenging conditions, including against sea currents, variable wind, marine traffic and reefs which will with no doubt bring great tactical choices across the fleet."

Which team will win the game of snakes and ladders? With 1000nm to the Whitsundays much can change in the thrill of offshore racing, keep track via the Race Viewer.

Related Articles

Meet the Clipper Race crew: Terri Fisher
In just four days Terri went from Clipper Race fan to Clipper Race Crew Terri lives in the Northern Irish city of Derry-Londonderry and is affectionately known to her teammates as 'Terri From Derry'. Her road to joining the Clipper Race was a short one. Posted on 28 Jun
A sneak preview of Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
What the future Host Port Partner has in store for when the Clipper Race visits One Race Crew member got a sneak preview of what future Host Port Partner Ha Long Bay, Vietnam has in store for when the Clipper Race visits the city in spring 2023. Posted on 27 Jun
Anything but plain sailing through the Caribbean
The race from Panama through the Caribbean Sea is a far stretch from a holiday on the relaxed paced The race from Panama through the Caribbean Sea is a far stretch from a holiday on the relaxed paced, tropical islands the Clipper Race teams will traverse. Posted on 21 Jun
A message from Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez
Continuing to do a fantastic job of looking after the Clipper fleet in Subic Bay Punta del Este Skipper, Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez continues to do a fantastic job of looking after the fleet in Subic Bay, Philippines. He has been maintaining the yachts and keeping them secure ready for the crew to return in February 2021. Posted on 13 Jun
Tropical Squall: Pot of trouble or welcome relief?
Temperatures can soar as the route sees crew racing through the tropics During the Clipper Race Circumnavigation, temperatures can soar as the route sees crew racing through the tropics and across the equator. Posted on 7 Jun
Clipper Round the World Race: A look back
Bill Lyons circumnavigated the world in the Clipper 2017-18 Race - today she reflects on her blog. Bill Lyons reflects on her blog written during Leg 7 of the 2017/18 Clipper Round The World Race: "It doesn't feel like two years ago! The race was such an affecting experience that it still feels quite fresh." Posted on 6 Jun
Experience an engineering marvel: The Panama Canal
Passage through the Panama Canal is a bucket list highlight For everyone taking part in the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race, the passage through the Panama Canal is a bucket list highlight. Posted on 30 May
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston: Sailing Legend
Feature-length sailing documentary film chronicling the extraordinary man A feature-length sailing documentary film chronicling the extraordinary life, career and record-breaking voyage of the legendary ocean racer and adventurer Sir Robin Knox-Johnston. Posted on 17 May
Earth Day: A spotlight on sustainable practices
Clipper Race aims to create a greater link between communities and the ocean In celebration of Earth Day 2020, we are shining a spotlight on Clipper Race Partners who remain committed to implementing sustainable practices throughout their businesses. Posted on 26 Apr
Interview with Ollie Phillips
Clipper Veteran and ex-England Rugby Captain It's not every day that Sir Robin Knox-Johnson suggests you join the Clipper Round the World race! This is what happened to Ollie Phillips after a career changing injury, and 3 weeks later he was starting his training. Posted on 19 Apr
MBW newsletters (top)