News » Archived News 2010

Eighth place for Cork in return to Clipper 09-10

Cork Clipper Returns
        Photo of Cork crew courtesy Heather Ewing/Clipper Ventures PLC

Cork has secured a creditable eighth place in their first race back together again in the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race. Sailing across the finish line at dawn with their medium weight spinnaker flying, those watching from the shore line could hear the cheers from on board as the close knit team celebrated a remarkable achievement.

Cork’s corrected time under the IRC rating system puts them ahead of Qingdao and California in this race and eighth in the overall contest.For Cork resident, Sarah Boyle, crossing the finish line was a bittersweet moment, as it is the last race in which she will compete in Clipper 09-10. “My final little race on Cork – it’s very sad but it’s nice to be in at last. It was a great race, quite tough getting used to a new boat – the bow was very wet, but we had great fun. It was great to be back with everyone.”

Sarah will be on the quayside in Kinsale to welcome the Clipper fleet when the yachts arrive there in July. Next week full details of the Cork Clipper Festival will be unveiled for the eight day stopover in Kinsale and Cork in the first week of July.

This was the first race in charge for Hannah Jenner, Cork’s skipper, who says her crew have been adjusting well to their new boat. “The team are great – the boat’s hard work. Everyone had a lot to learn, but you could see everyone was happy to be back together again and putting a lot of effort into the boat,” she said.

“She’s a lot harder to sail than the 68s that everybody’s used to. It’s a different motion and there was quite a lot of sea sickness but everyone cracked on with it and we finally made it. It’s not something I’m very used to, being last boat in!

“While we’re here we’re going to be trying to make the boat lighter. We’re carrying a lot of extra stuff, so a big clean up, tidy up, taking stuff off and we’ve noticed a lot of little touches that we need to do to make it more liveable when we’re going through rough stuff, so we’re hoping to get that sorted and be ready to rock.”

Jacqui Browne, who has already sailed three legs of the race and was part of the team working on preparing Cork in Antigua and delivering her to Panama, said, “It was great to be back, great to be on board with some upwind sailing. It was absolutely hard work at times, particularly for a day and a half of it. The boat’s very dry in the cockpit and very wet on the bow but good fun; it was a bit hard going on the heel but it was good.

“This race was as much an opportunity for people to get comfortable with the boat and how she operates and what little tricks work best with her on the different tacks and different trims and so on. So we pushed her as hard as we could. We’re carrying an awful lot of extra weight which we’re delighted to be getting rid of here in Jamaica so we reckon that will be nothing but favourable for us.”

The race was won by Spirit of Australia, who extend their lead at the top of the table to 19 points. After a fast and furious race up through the Caribbean from Panama to Jamaica, the fleet slowed to a crawl as they rounded the island’s most easterly point and were caught as the wind died away, the last 25-mile stretch of the race taking almost six hours for the leading boats to complete.

Spirit of Australia and Hull & Humber were locked in battle for line honours, with Cape Breton Island and Team Finland nipping at their heels. Line honours were eventually claimed by Spirit of Australia as they crossed the finish line at Port Antonio’s distinctive orange and white lighthouse at 1546 local time (2046 GMT), just three minutes and 50 seconds ahead of Hull & Humber, who score their first podium finish of the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race campaign. Cape Breton Island was third to cross the finish line, 12 minutes and 19 seconds behind the leaders.

With almost 200 crew on board the ten yachts, others who have arrived to take up their places for the last leg back to the UK, which starts in Jamaica, plus friends and families visiting crew, Port Antonio is set for a busy few days. This will be the third time the fleet has visited the Errol Flynn Marina and there was a colourful and noisy reception for all of the boats with drummers and dancers waiting on the pontoon to welcome the teams to Port Antonio.

The race is contested by people from a huge variety of backgrounds and from more than 30 nationalities, who put their everyday lives on hold to compete in the 35,000-mile challenge of a lifetime on board one of the ten stripped down 68-foot ocean racing yachts.  Among the crews are taxi drivers, nurses, housewives, lawyers, chief executives and engineers.

Each Clipper yacht is entered by a city, region or country and sponsors use the event to showcase themselves to the world. On the last running of the Clipper Race, more than 212 million people worldwide followed the adventure through television, print media, radio and online.

The fleet will leave Port Antonio for the start of Race 10 to New York on Monday 24 May.

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