Visit Seat­tle blitzes Clip­per ocean sprint

Whitsunday Times - - ON THE WATER -

COM­ING out of the gate of last week’s ocean sprint, the four lead yachts in the Clip­per Around the World yacht race are: LMAX Ex­change, Clip­per Telemed, UNICEF and Derry Lon­don­derry Doire.

In another week of sur­prises, af­ter UNICEF’s win in the Panama Cup, the Visit Seat­tle crew has blitzed first ocean sprint scor­ing her first bonus points so far and well in the lead with only two yachts to com­plete the sprint.

The team, which had taken the most westerly route of the fleet along with Visit Seat­tle, proved the wider route dur­ing the ocean sprint was their faster one at the time.

Though on May 14 not all yachts had com­pleted the ocean sprint and skip­per Huw Fernie was not pre­pared to claim vic­tory just yet.

“So we’re in stealth mode, which was ini­tially to cover our progress in the ocean sprint, but we were al­most done by the time it kicked in any­way,” he said.

“That was pretty good and a nice way to keep the boat mov­ing well overnight. We’ll see what the oth­ers can do, es­pe­cially long term sprint en­emy

Mis­sion Per­for­mance who have pushed us into sec­ond place twice pre­vi­ously.”

Mis­sion Per­for­mance, PSP Lo­gis­tics, Da Nang Viet­nam, Great Britain, and Garmin have all com­menced their ocean sprints, though light winds and flat calm seas are mak­ing frus­trat­ingly slow progress in in­creas­ingly swel- ter­ing con­di­tions.

Over­all Visit Seat­tle is placed to­ward the rear of the chase pack with Da Nang Viet­nam cur­rently in last place.

LMAX Ex­change and Clip­per Telemed are be­gin­ning to feel added heat from some of the pur­su­ing teams, which have made de­cent ground on them in the past 24 hours.

Cur­rently off the coast of Gu­atemala, the Clip­per crews are about half way be­tween Seat­tle and their next rest stop, Panama City.

From Panama City they will make their way through the Panama Canal and head north where they will fin­ish Leg 7. They will be­gin Leg 8 from New York City, which will see them home in early July af­ter sail­ing 40,000 nau­ti­cal miles.

OCEAN SPRINT: Visit Seat­tle leads the ocean sprint dur­ing Leg 7 of the Clip­per race.

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