Clipper Round the World Yacht Race: Latest Update

The vessels taking part in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race are now in the early stages of the Spinlock South Atlantic Showdown, the third race in the competition. Crews faced the difficult decision of choosing between two routes to Cape Town: the most direct rhumb line which carries risks of being affected by the St Helena High or a less direct southerly route which, although a longer distance, generally offers more consistent conditions.

Clipper Round the World Yacht Race: Latest Update

Two distinct groups have thus formed, with seven of the teams choosing to follow the rhumb line and, at the time of writing, separated by less than 20 nautical miles (nm). The remainder of the competing vessels have chosen to follow the more southerly route and are separated by just 5nm.

GoToBermuda is one of the yachts that has chosen the more direct but less predictable route. Skipper of the vessel David 'Wavy' Immelman said: "From the sailing point of view, we are still hugging the rhumb line (shortest possible route) seeing our group pass either ahead or behind us from time to time. Looking at the forecast we are expecting our nice 15-20 knots of breeze to drop tomorrow, so we might as well enjoy it, or as they say, make hay while the sun shines. Following that we are expecting our first low pressure. Bring it on… Loads of wind rain and speed!

Consistent wind ensures that results are seen in real time. After the isolation of the previous leg which saw vessels cross the Atlantic, many crews are enjoying the relative closeness experienced on this leg. Mike Surridge, the skipper of Imagine Your Korea, said: "All through the afternoon we found more and more of the fleet, starting with Punta del Este and growing until we now have four others on AIS and in and out of visual range. After the isolation of Race 2, when we sailed alone down the Atlantic, this proximity is a welcome change. Mistakes show in real time – but so too does good work and good driving.

The Spinlock South Atlantic Showdown race sees the fleet travel 3,555nm from Punta del Este in Uruguay to Cape Town in South Africa. Vessels are due to arrive at their destination between November 7 and 11: subscribe to our newsletter for updates!

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