CLIPPER 11-12: RACE 7 – GOLD COAST TO SINGAPORE – DAY 6

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CLIPPER 11-12
RACE 7: GOLD COAST TO SINGAPORE
DAY 6

* Gold Coast Australia first across Scoring Gate, Geraldton Western Australia second
* Teams begin to feel the effects of ex-Tropical Cyclone Grant
* Fleet divides into two groups; will west or east be best?

The route for Race 7 from Gold Coast to Singapore is a complicated one. In addition to the challenges of Tropical Cyclones and the energy sapping heat there are many reefs and islands to contend with and the Race Committee has included in the course instructions a number of compulsory gates to keep the fleet away from navigation hazards. This means that in lining up for the Scoring Gate in the Coral Sea, the teams are involved in something akin to a game of chess, where they have to plan several steps ahead in order to then be in the correct position to reach the next gate which takes them around the islands at the eastern limits of Papua New Guinea (PNG).

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Christmas Eve launch to assist family drifting into the Solent

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Date: 28/12/2011

Author: Aaron Gent, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer

The crew of the RNLI Portsmouth Lifeboat were called away from their festive preparations on the afternoon of Christmas Eve and requested to launch to assist a broken down speedboat reported to be drifting out of Langstone harbour.

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Cessna Citation closes in on Cook Strait

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Phillippa Hutton-Squire helming at sunset at 45S – Photo Phesheya-Racing

After 29 days and 7,000 miles of racing through the high-latitudes of the Indian Ocean, the five, double-handed Global Ocean Race (GOR) Class40s are being severely tested as they approach the Leg 2 finish line in Wellington, New Zealand. At the head of the fleet, on race leader Cessna Citation, Kiwi yachtsman, Conrad Colman, and his British co-skipper, Sam Goodchild, escaped an area of light airs off the west coast of South Island on Wednesday evening GMT, only to run into strong headwinds and punishing seas along the continental shelf with under 200 miles to the finish. The second Kiwi team, Ross and Campbell Field on BSL, came to within 70 miles of Cessna Citation at 03:00 GMT on Thursday as they chase Colman and Goodchild along the coast.

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INVESTEC LOYAL CROWNED LINE HONOURS WINNERS

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Line Honours Winner INVESTEC LOYAL’s crew
INVESTEC LOYAL Line Honours Winner of the 2011 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2011

Following a three hour hearing at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania before the International Jury, the Race Committee’s protest against Investec Loyal was dismissed and Anthony Bell and the crew of his 100ft maxi were finally declared the line honours victors in the 2011 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

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CLIPPER 11-12: RACE 7 – GOLD COAST TO SINGAPORE – DAY 5

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Fleet still close packed with only 36 nm between Gold Coast in the lead and Edinburgh Inspiring Capital as back marker

CLIPPER 11-12
RACE 7: GOLD COAST TO SINGAPORE
DAY 5

* Clipper Race Management team monitors cyclone risk in Coral Sea
* Close racing keeps teams focused on Scoring Gate
* Geraldton Western Australia closes in on Gold Coast Australia

One of the major features of the race from the Gold Coast on the east coast of Australia to Singapore, other than the fact that it will be the longest time so far that the crews will have spent at sea in a single stretch, is wind: not enough of it, a situation the teams are enduring today, or altogether too much.

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VOLVO OCEAN RACE 2011-12 ANTI-PIRACY PLAN KICKS INTO ACTION

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Cheating the Pirates

Alicante, Spain – The latest stage of the Volvo Ocean Race’s anti-piracy plans kicked into action on Wednesday, as five racing yachts were carefully lifted onto a commercial ship over the past 24 hours and readied for a transfer across the Indian Ocean to a set-down point off the Sharjah coastline in the northern Emirates.

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CLOSEST FINISH IN 29 YEARS

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INVESTEC LOYAL and WILD OATS XI close to the finish line on the Derwent River
XI, WILD OATS XI, Sail No: 10001, Owner: Bob Oatley, Design: Reichel/Pugh 30 Mtr, LOA (m): 30.5, State: NSW 100, INVESTEC LOYAL, Sail No: SYD100, Owner: Anthony Bell, Design: Elliott, LOA (m): 30.5, S

The closest finish in the last 29 years of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race took place this evening when Anthony Bell’s maxi Investec Loyal fended off repeated challenges from Bob Oatley’s perennial line honours victor Wild Oats XI to win by just 3 minutes and 8 seconds, after 2 days 6 hours 14 minutes and 8 seconds of racing on this classic 628 mile course.

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An upwind hammering is on the cards as the fleet leaders approach Wellington

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Stunning conditions 230 miles south-west of Tasmania – Photo Phesheya-Racing

With the double-handed Global Ocean Race (GOR) Class40s spread over 1,200 miles to the west of New Zealand, there are, naturally, immense differences in the conditions for the five boats. The leading duo of Cessna Citation and BSL were separated by 110 miles at 03:00 GMT on Wednesday and had entered an area of light airs off the western coast of South Island with 253 miles of Leg 2 remaining for Cessna Citation, while Campagne de France in third, 306 miles astern of BSL, was also trapped in a breeze vacuum tantalisingly close the finish line in Wellington. Further west, straddling Tasmania, Financial Crisis in fourth and Phesheya-Racing in fifth were in strong westerly wind and making good progress, despite a batten-breaking crash gybe for the Italian-Spanish team on Financial Crisis.

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