Visit Seattle has made it’s claim for the overall Clipper Race victory by winning the penultimate race into Derry.
Visit Seattle crossed the finish line in an area north east of the entrance to Lough Foyle shortly after midnight on Monday, July 9 to complete the 3,000 nautical mile race across the Atlantic Ocean, during the fast-paced sixth and final ocean crossing of the eleven-month circumnavigation, in just over 12 days.
Nikki Henderson said: “I am so proud of how hard my team worked to get this win. The crew never let up over the past two weeks and really deserve this result.
“We will certainly be celebrating the result in Derry-Londonderry but we all know the job isn’t done yet. The leaderboard is very close so the final race to Liverpool will be very exciting.”
This is the third win and fifth podium for Visit Seattleand the victory in the race from New York to Derry has set up a thrilling duel for the overall Clipper Race Trophy between Nikki and Sanya Serenity Coast Skipper, Wendy Tuck, 53 from Sydney, Australia, with the pair now vying to be the first female winner in the 22-year history of the Clipper Race.
There was a certain amount of indecision on board Visit Seattle about whether to go north or south following the Le Mans style race start off the coast of Long Island on Monday 25 June.
However, the decision to stay with the main pack and hug the rhumb line paid dividends when Visit Seattle picked up an extra 4 knots of speed after finding the Gulf Stream on Day 4.
As the fog rolled in over the chilly North Atlantic on Day 6, Visit Seattle decided to disappear completely and whilst in Stealth Mode, picked up two bonus points for being second across the Scoring Gate.
The team came out of Stealth in second place and despite blowing the Code 1 (Lightweight Spinnaker) on Day 9 – a setback that resulted in the Sail Repair team heroically spend 30 hours working at a 45 degree angle – Visit Seattle pushed into first place on Day 11 and remained in front all the way to the finish line.
The team is due to arrive into Derry at midday local time on Monday, July 9. Any changes or updates to the time will be made on the Clipper Race website here, and weather depending, the arrival will be broadcast on the Clipper Race Facebook Live Page.