Race 13 of the Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race, from Jamaica to New York gets underway in stunning style.
Race 13 - The Grange Hotels Trophy from Port Antonio, Jamaica to New York, USA got underway today at 1330 local time (1830 UTC) from the Folly Point Lighthouse by Port Antonio.
PSP Logistics, Old Pulteney, and Derry~Londonderry~Doire crossed the line first, in that order, in a beautifully sunny, closely fought race start after heavy monsoon conditions and thunder this morning cleared up.
Mark Light, Clipper Race Deputy Race Director explained: “A typically Caribbean easterly breeze of about 12 to 15 knots allowed for a stunning, tropical start to Race 13: The Grange Hotels Trophy, to New York. After a short delay to get the committee start boat on station, the start line was set and the fleet were busy jostling for position during pre-start.
“At 1330 the gunshot sounded from Coastguard Cutter HMJS Cornwall and an impressive start ensued and in my opinion, one of the most hotly contested in the Clipper Race so far. PSP Logistics timed its start superbly, followed very closely by Old Pulteney and Derry~Londonderry~Doire and the rest of the fleet, looking magnificent as it heading away up wind.”
After leaving the Jamaican coastline, the twelve teams competing in the world’s longest ocean race are now heading into lighter winds near the Windward Passage, which marks the exit from the Caribbean Sea into the Atlantic Ocean.
The 1420 mile race will see crews experience wind from every point of the compass as the yachts head away from the steady Caribbean trade winds into the variable winds associated with the depressions coming from the North American land mass.
Speaking this morning ahead of the race start, Eric Holden, Skipper of Henri Lloyd, the overall ClipperRace leaders said: “I’m telling my crew to expect anything in this race, downwind reaching, calms, strong wind, so like I said, it is kind of hard to plan for this one. Just need to adapt to the situation as it comes. Things will evolve pretty quick once you get the low pressures coming off the eastern seaboard.”
Sean McCarter, skipper of Derry~Londonderry~Doire added: “We’ve got a bit of a tricky exit out of the Caribbean Sea through the Bahama’s, light wind, upwind. After that I think it will be much of a spin up to New York so I’m expecting another close race.
The race course includes an elective Scoring Gate and an Ocean Sprint section between the lines of latitudes 30N and 32N. As usual, each yacht will also have the opportunity to use one 24 hour period of Stealth Mode.
The estimated fleet arrival into New York is 31 May, where the winning team will receive the Grange Hotels Trophy and a celebratory hamper.
Tony Matharu, Managing Director of Grange Hotels, one of GREAT Britain’s sponsors, said London and New York have an exceptionally close cultural, economical and historical relationship. “As London's leading luxury hotel group, Grange Hotels enjoy a special relationship with many corporations, organisations and individuals from New York and across the US.
“Similarly the sense of teamwork, commitment and individual endeavour for a common collective cause is evidenced in both the sport of sailing and in the manner in which Grange Hotels manage their 17 luxury London properties.
“This explains why we at Grange Hotels are delighted to support the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race and the Jamaica to New York race in particular.”
For more information and photos, please contact:
Julia Wall-Clarke, Clipper Race Senior Press Officer
Local mobile: +001 876 473 0450