Dismastings in the Clipper Round the World Race will delay the start of the upcoming Honolulu to Santa Cruz leg. That delay will result in a shorter Santa Cruz stopover to make up the lost time, according to organizers, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s Clipper Ventures. The start, originally scheduled for March 26, is now projected to be 8 to 10 days later.
The delay looked likely when westernaustralia2011.com lost her rig 700 miles east of Yokohama, Japan, on the way to Honolulu from the start in Qingdao. Then disaster struck again when Durban 2010 and Beyond lost her rig, albeit much closer to the finish. But the clincher came when westernaustralia2011.com fouled its prop hard enough to damage the transmission as they motored toward Honolulu after a refueling stop in the Midway Islands. Following the second dismasting of the completely identical boats, race management called the leg before the boats reached Hawaii, instructing the crews to reduce sail as a safety precaution. "With hundreds of non-professional crew members competing in Clipper 07-08, safety is paramount for Clipper Ventures," said spokesperson Zoe Williamson.
For a more detailed account of the dismastings and what’s involved in getting transmission parts to the Midway Islands, look for the April issue of Latitude 38, due out April 1.