CLIPPER ROUND THE WORLD RACE
In terms of sheer endurance, the Clipper Race may be the choice for those looking to push the envelope, as it’s a speed run around the world aboard a fleet of 70ft ocean racing yachts. Created in 1996 by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (the first competitor to complete a solo non-stop around the world race in the 1969) the next edition will be the twelfth in the series.
Divided into eight legs encompassing 13
to 16 races, the event allows you to choose between a full circumnavigation or one or more individual stages. Over 40,000 miles are covered in all, including six visits to continents, doubling three Great Capes and multiple bluewater passages. Scoring is a points-based system from one to 12 points in each leg. At the end of the series, the overall winner is the one with the most points.
Twelve identical racing yachts start from Liverpool, England, and each is led by a professional captain. Typically, 40 percent of the crew are novices, making this the only global yacht race for amateur sailors. Crew must be at least 18, and there is no upper age limit, with the oldest competitor to date checking in at 76. Nearly 5,000 people have been transformed into ocean racers since the concept launched over 20 years ago.
If you’re particularly hardy, you may appreciate that on average, circumnavigating crew will spend over 500 hours at the helm and will burn 5,000 calories per day. (What a great diet!) For thrill seekers, consider that the highest wind speed recorded on a leg was 86 knots in the Southern Ocean, and the largest wave was 90ft high. Each boat carries 16,468ft² of sail, so get ready— be- cause that’s what you’ll be raising, lowering and reefing. Applications are taken a year in advance. Clipper Ventures, clipperroundtheworld.com s