The Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race fleet is about to embark on the last race of its All-Australian Leg, as it races up the east coast of Australia to the Whitsundays in Race 4: The Wondrous Whitsundays Race.
The All-Australian Leg is the fourth of eight legs, which make up the 40,000 nautical mile voyage around the world, and is certainly full of challenge and adrenaline with the Clipper Race crews having completed a grueling race around the south of Australia from Fremantle to Sydney, followed by the iconic Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.
Now, they are dusting off their kit and hoisting the sails again, as they prepare to depart for the ‘Wondrous Whitsundays Race’, which takes them from Hobart to the Whitsundays on January 5, 2018.
Expected to take between eight and 10 days, the ‘Wondrous Whitsundays Race’ – so-called to reflect the wonder and beauty of the Whitsundays – will see the Clipper Race yachts arrive into Airlie Beach between January 13 and 15, 2018.
The fourth stage of the Clipper 2017-18 Race, officially known as Race 4: The Clipper Telemed+ Tasman Test, includes three races along the Australian coast. The 11 teams will race from Fremantle to Sydney, Sydney to Hobart, and Hobart to Airlie Beach in the heart of the picturesque Whitsunday Islands.
The All-Australian Leg is the fourth of eight legs that make up the 40,000-nautical mile, eleven-month Clipper 2017-18 Race.
Background: Held biennially, the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race got underway August 20 for the fleet of twelve* identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s. The 40,000nm course is divided into 13 individual races with the team having the best cumulative score winning the Clipper Race Trophy. Each team is led by a professional skipper with an all-amateur crew that signs up for one, some, or all the races. The 2017-18 race, expected to take 11 months, has attracted 712 people representing 41 nationalities, making it the largest to date.
* Twelve teams began the first leg but one yacht (Greenings) ran aground just hours after the start on October 31 of the third leg from Cape Town, South Africa to Fremantle, Australia. The crew was safely evacuated but damage to the boat was deemed too extensive for it to continue in the 2017-18 edition.