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24-Year-Old British Skipper In Line For Clipper Race Win In Whitsundays

January 17, 2018 Sports No Comments Email Email
Visit Seattle, Skippered by 24-year-old British sailor Nikki Henderson, is in line to claim its first win of the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race, with the team currently leading the fleet to the finish line in the Whitsundays, Australia.

Visit Seattle is predicted to cross the finish line between 1600 and 1800 local time (0600 and 0800 UTC) though three teams – PSP Logistics, Sanya Serenity Coast, and Liverpool 2018 – are just 4 nautical miles astern and expected to arrive by 1900 local time (0900 UTC).
Dramatic weather systems that have dominated much of Race 6: The Wondrous Whitsundays Race have made it the most challenging stage of the Clipper 2017-18 Race since it departed Liverpool, UK, last August. The fleet has endured two‘Southerly Buster’ weather fronts, which brought winds of up to 78 knots, electrical activity and squally downpours, plus upwind conditions off the coast of southeast Australia.
Visit Seattle has managed to use these conditions to its advantage and has began a drag race to the finish line. However, Skipper Nikki Henderson, who is no stranger to fighting for first place right up to the end, knows that anything can still happen: “So, we have arranged another close one for all you supporters. This last bit is SO nerve racking. Constantly looking over our shoulder and hoping we don’t make any mistakes. Let’s hope it works out.”
A win would cap off what has been a brilliant All-Australian Leg 4 for Visit Seattle. The team achieved its first podium after finishing a close second behind Sanya Serenity Coast in the opening race from Fremantle to Sydney. Visit Seattle also picked up Scoring Gate bonus points for a third time after being second through the gate in Race 6.
Nikki Henderson from Surrey, UK, is the youngest Skipper in eleven editions and 21 years of the Clipper Race, taking over from previous youngest Skipper Alex Thomspson who has gone on to finish second in the 2017 Vendee Globe. Nikki’s team Visit Seattle went into Race 6 in fourth place in the overall standings.
The Clipper Race is unique as it is raced by people like you. In 1996, legendary yachtsman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first person to sail solo, non-stop around the world in 1968-69, founded the race as a way to give everyone, no matter their sailing experience, the chance to become an ocean racer. Approximately 40 per cent of crew members have never sailed before they sign up for the 40,000 nautical miles circumnavigation, which is divided into eight legs and features six ocean crossings.
More than 700 people from all walks of life and representing 41 different nationalities are taking part in the eleventh edition of the biennial Clipper Race, including 47 Australians. They are racing on eleven identical stripped back 70-foot ocean racing yachts, each led by a professional Skipper.
As well as Australia, the global Clipper 2017-18 Race route also includes stopovers in Punta del Este, Cape Town, Sanya, Qingdao, Seattle, Panama, New York, Derry-Londonderry and Liverpool, where the eleven month race will finish on 28 July, 2018.
The latest Estimated Time of Arrivals for the teams into Abell Point Marina, Airlie Beach, are below and will be updated regularly on the Clipper Race website as the teams approach the Finish Line.

CLIPPER 2017-18 RACE FLEET ETAS – WHITSUNDAYS

UPDATED 16-01-18 AT 0900LT (15-01-18 2300UTC)

TEAM

CURRENT POSITION

ESTIMATED ARRIVAL DAY

ARRIVAL (LOCAL) TIME TO FINISH LINE

STATUS

VISIT SEATTLE

1

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

1600 – 1800

RACING

PSP LOGISTICS

2

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

1700 – 1900

RACING

SANYA SERENITY COAST

3

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

1700 – 1900

RACING

LIVERPOOL 2018

4

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

1700 – 1900

RACING

GARMIN

5

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

2100 – 0000

RACING (JOKER PLAYED)

QINGDAO

6

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

2200 – 0100

RACING

DARE TO LEAD

7

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

2200 – 0100

RACING

UNICEF

8

TUESDAY 16 JANUARY 2018

2300 – 0200

RACING

GREAT BRITAIN

9

WEDNESDAY 17 JANUARY 2018

0400 – 1000

RACING

NASDAQ

10

WEDNESDAY 17 JANUARY 2018

0800 – 1200

RACING

HOTELPLANNER.COM

11

WEDNESDAY 17 JANUARY 2018

0900 – 1300

RACING

OVERALL CLIPPER 2017-18 RACE STANDINGS

1   SANYA SERENITY COAST         56

2   QINGDAO                               54*

3   DARE TO LEAD                        49*

4   VISIT SEATTLE                        48

5   GREAT BRITAIN                       44*

6   PSP LOGISTICS                        40

7   GARMIN                                   35

8   HOTELPLANNER.COM                31

9   UNICEF                                    28

10   LIVERPOOL 2018                     24

11   NASDAQ                                 22

(* Already played Joker Card)

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