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Home » Sailing » Clipper Race: dreaded wind hole could shake up the leader board

Clipper Race: dreaded wind hole could shake up the leader board


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/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/2681-news-main.jpg" alt="Race 8 Day 18: Will a dreaded wind hole shake up the leaderboard once again? (Credit Clipper Ventures)" />

Clipper Ventures. Race 8 Day 18: Will a dreaded wind hole shake up the leaderboard once again? (Credit Clipper Ventures). Credit: .

In the last 24 hours the fleet has made steady progress to the Sarangani waypoint after the forecasted calmer conditions failed to materialise, allowing some of the teams to take full advantage of 25 knots of strong breeze on deck.

However, with a dreaded wind hole on the horizon, will the most northerly yachts be able to claw back the lead in Race 8?

After battling through fickle winds and cruel currents for thousands of miles, a wind hole looks set to shake up the leaderboard all over again as Mother Nature plays her cruellest card. Decision time now looms for the front runners – will the leaders continue to battle on in the favourable winds, but risk being becalmed in the forecast wind hole? Or will they join the rest of the fleet further north, in hope of finding the north east trade winds? With so much at risk at this stage of the race, skipper of OneDLL Olly Cotterell knows that his lead could soon disappear:

“If the weather goes the right way for them the boats to the north pose a real threat even though they are hundreds of miles to the east of us. If we stop and they get fair conditions as has been shown in previous legs, hundreds of miles is no lead at all so it is all to play for. As it is the northern yachts are making steady gains every schedule on us as they get a more favourable wind direction.”

Both Mission Performance and Team Garmin received a royal visitor in the shape of King Neptune, to anoint the new Shellbacks, as the new crew members crossed the Equator for the very first time. Matt Mitchell, skipper of Mission Performance describes his team’s unconventional royal ceremony: “Over our lunchtime session today Queen Neptuna (round the world crew member Sophie Hetherton) hosted her court to welcome our Pollywogs into her domain and grant them the title of Shellbacks. The forfeits were suitably gross involving the fools halter, last nights dinner mixed with grey tank water, bilge water, coffee grounds and pancake mix, as well as a good flouring for good measure. Everybody held themselves with great aplomb and earned their new title!”

For more race information, go here.

By Clipper Race


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