it or not, the Clipper 2002 Round the World Series is now over.
Many reading this will have been closely involved with the race
for the last year. Whether we have been sailing in it, supporting
it or running it, Clipper 2002 is an event that has dominated many
lives over the last year and more.
is the longest race on Earth in distance and also in time and, for
many of us, it has been an all encompassing experience.
Clipper, skippered by the Isle of Wight's Simon Rowell, claimed
an impressive 12 podium places on the 16-race series and took first
place on the overall leaderboard.
triumphant crew scored 4 race victories in all, winning into Colon
(Panama Canal), Galapagos, New York and Holyhead, so the Jersey
team can truly hold their heads high - not least because they have
now achieved the ultimate goal in sailing, having raced around the
brave and talented heroes who have bashed and crashed their racing
yachts through the world's oceans have been supported by so many
others; family supporters, media, ports and yacht clubs, racing
enthusiasts, the various organising staff, sponsors, well wishers
and most importantly the supporting cities!
and in style
this in mind, the eight teams have enjoyed a cracking Round the
World Yacht Race with a combined fleet total of over 300,000 miles
raced. They sailed safely and in style - both of these factors have
only been achieved because of the efforts of everyone concerned.
is easy to think solely of the racing aspect of the Clipper 2002
Series, but the event has also promoted an interest in sailing to
many who would never have followed or taken part in it before.
has drawn together communities, cities and countries and, with the
help of the inspired Liverpool City Council schools programme, brought
school children throughout the world closer together.
civic delegations have opened trade and commercial opportunities
around the globe, whilst the sailors have brought a truly competitive
sporting event into the heart of each city stopover.
race has also drawn people into the I.T. world, some who would never
have dared cross this threshold, and the Clipper 60 yachts have
tested and developed racing equipment, as a flagship for the industry.
organisers, Clipper Ventures plc, certainly had their share of curved
balls over the 11 months of this race, but all were played successfully.
greatest testimony and justifiable reward was evident on Saturday,
27 September, when the most spectacular yacht race finish took place
in Liverpool, UK. With over 80,000 people celebrating in the award-winning
Albert Dock, this proved to be a real tribute from this proud, hospitable
and forward looking city.
Clipper 2002 Race Director, Colin de Mowbray, concluded: 'We can
all be justly proud of this event, but my overriding pride is to
see the changes in the crew as they make their sad farewells around
the Albert Dock.'
are vastly different from when they set off 11 months ago with their
doubts, fears and apprehension. These individuals are special. They
are the ones who did not just talk about what they might do in life.
They are the ones who have done something and done something very
have total admiration for them, and now you mention it there is
a difference, I could swear that as they walk confidently around
the Albert Dock, they are all three inches taller.'