Clipper Round the World Yacht Race – The steady, downwind race is over and teams now find themselves living at an uncomfortable degree angle, beating into variable headwinds as they battle the frustrating conditions to select the best Ocean Sprint route.
After starting the Ocean Sprint section at approximately the same time, teams are now almost half way through it with Visit Seattle currently holding onto its overall race lead. Mission Performance and Garmin remain second and third, followed closely by GREAT Britain and Derry~Londonderry~Doire.
Huw Fernie, Skipper of first- place Visit Seattle reports: “Today has been a day for racing headsail changes as we are working hard to keep moving through the changeable winds. We have now entered the Ocean Sprint and the crew are digging a little deeper to maintain good speeds, creating challenging angles for the mothers.
“The mood is good as for the last few reports we find ourselves in first place. There are a fair few miles to go to Sydney, yet a happy crew who eagerly wait for the reports keeping everything crossed. Happy Hour truly is that and to see beaming faces shows that their extra effort continues to pay off.”
With the variable easterly winds forecasted to build to 30 knots tomorrow, and potentially gusting 40 to 45 knots on Sunday, the difficult upwind conditions are expected to get even tougher as the fleet continues to make its way across the Great Australian Bight to the next race mark, Tasmania.
After its excellent fourth place position yesterday, Unicef is now ninth after dropping furthest south in the fleet. Skipper Martin Clough says it’s been tough but the team is remaining positive: “It has been a frustrating 24 hours for Unicef, with variable winds and squalls which will have affected our position. The wind moved forward earlier and has forced us south. Hmmmm!
“The team has been working very hard with headsail changes and reefs as the wind has ranged from eight knots to 30 knots in the squalls. Spirits are still high and we are very pleased with our performance so far.
LMAX Exchange entered Stealth Mode at 0600 UTC this morning and will have its position hidden on the Race Viewer until 0600 UTC tomorrow. Where will it pop up tomorrow? Will Visit Seattle hold onto the lead to claim its first ever bonus points? Stay tuned to the Race Viewer to find out.
Elliot Brown Timekeeper Cup: Competition
Throughout race four, Daily Update readers have the chance to win the limited edition Clipper Racewatch.
All you have to do is share with Elliot Brown, the race’s Official Timekeeper, a picture that represents a significant snapshot of your greatest adventure or challenge. It could be an image of a roaring success or an epic fail as they view failures very much as part of reaching greater things.
Accompany the image with a short caption within one tweet/Facebook comment and include #ElliotBrownTimekeeper. Your caption should add context to the image to help the viewer imagine themselves in your situation. It could be humorous, serious or anything in between.