The first of the Clipper Race’s new fleet of twelve 70-foot ocean racing yachts arrived in Felixstowe UK last night (Monday 29 October 2012), marking the start of a new era for the race.
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Founder and Chairman of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, said: “This is a very exciting time for the Clipper Race. We are particularly looking forward to receiving the first boat and completing our company trials in home waters.”
Clipper Race Logistics Partner PSP transported the first Clipper 70 and the second is already en route. Each was loaded onto a vessel in Qingdao in China and transferred by sea to Felixstowe in Suffolk, where the mast and rigging will be fitted locally before the yachts are sailed to the Clipper Race base in Gosport, ready for final fit out, trials and pre-race training.
Managing Director of PSP, Frank Dixie, said: “As a trenchant supporter of the marine industry and the sport of sailing, we are honoured to bring these yachts to the UK. The Clipper 70s will form a part of sailing history and to be a part of that is fantastic.”
Highly respected naval architect, Tony Castro, was commissioned to design the new fleet, which features the third generation of Clipper Race yachts. The twelve new yachts will create the world’s biggest matched fleet of large ocean racing yachts.
The Clipper Round the World Yacht race is the longest at 40,000 miles. The ninth edition of the unique biennial event starts in summer (UK) 2013 and will take almost a year to complete. It is the only race to train amateurs to cross some of the world’s most challenging oceans.