Ian sails on Geraldton

Australian rivalry heats up with east versus west in the world’s longest global ocean race

For the first time in the history of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race Australia will have two entries when the world’s longest ocean race gets underway from Southampton, UK, on 31 July 2011. Gold Coast Australia is the east coast’s debut entry in the biennial event and although competition will be fierce between them and the other nine internationally sponsored teams taking part in the Clipper 11-12 Race, their fiercest contest is sure to be against the west coast’s third entry Geraldton Western Australia.Queensland’s Gold Coast will be represented with a yacht entry as well as acting as a host port when it welcomes the fleet to the east coast of Australia for the first time at the end of a new Australasian leg for Clipper 11-12, taking the teams from the west coast of Australia to the east coast via New Zealand.

Geraldton Western Australiawill represent the City of Greater Geraldton which has also been unveiled as the Western Australian stopover following the city’s popular debut as a host port in Clipper 09-10.The Clipper Race was established by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo and non-stop around the world, in order to give ordinary people the chance to do something truly extraordinary. Nearly 40 per cent of the crew have never sailed before training to take part and the crews come from all walks of life representing more than 230 professions and 40 nationalities, including 27 Australians. Each team is headed up by a professional skipper and taking charge of

Gold Coast Australia will be 31-year-old Richard Hewson from Hobart, Tasmania, and skippering

Geraldon Western Australia is 33-year-old Juan Coetzer from Pretoria, South Africa.

Sir Robin says, “Australian entries in the Clipper Race have been up there as our most competitive. This time round, with an entry from each coast, their competitive nature is sure to be heightened and we can look forward to some fierce competition on the water. Both will be keen to keep the Clipper Race Trophy Down Under and only time will tell whether either of them is successful. I for one will be watching with great interest!”

The 40,000-mile Clipper 11-12 Race is contested by ten identical stripped down 68-foot racing yachts, each sponsored by a city, region, country or company. Joining the two Australian entries for Clipper 11-12 are the Keppel Corporation sponsored

Singapore and, representing China’s Olympic sailing city,

Qingdao, both entering the race for the fourth time. Returning for a second time is

Visit Finland, backed by the Finnish Tourist Board and Scottish entry

Edinburgh Inspiring Capital. And making their debut in the race are

Derry-Londonderry, celebrating their status as UK City of Culture 2013, and

De Lage Landen, the global provider of asset-based financing programmes, which will race under the Dutch flag. The names of the remaining two yachts will be revealed in the coming weeks ahead of the start of the race.

Previous Australian entries in the Clipper Race have had strong pedigrees with Western Australia’s inaugural entry in Clipper 05-06 winning overall. Whilst their second team in Clipper 07-08 failed to retain the prestigious Clipper Race Trophy, the yacht named

westernaustralia2011.com helped Perth beat off stiff competition from eight other international cities to secure the ISAF 2011 World Sailing Championships. Currently the title of Clipper Race champion lies with the

Spirit of Australia team which took home the trophy in Clipper 09-10 and it remains to be seen whether either of the Australian entries in Clipper 11-12 can keep it there.  

The international fleet will visit 15 ports on six continents during the 12-month race including Brazil, Cape Town, west and east coasts of Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Qingdao, California, New York, Nova Scotia, Derry-Londonderry and the Netherlands before returning to the UK.

The yachts are expected to arrive in Geraldton in late October 2011 at the start of the Australian summer and it will be the second time the city has hosted the fleet.

The yachts provide both Australian cities with a great marketing opportunity to promote their regions as tourist destinations around the world. Equally the stopovers provide them with the chance to showcase what their regions have to offer, as well as allowing them to benefit from the strong economic impact that the race delivers.

Mayor of the City of Greater Geraldton, Cllr Ian Carpenter, said, “I am delighted to welcome the fleet back again for the Clipper 11-12 Race. I am even more delighted that we have a yacht and will have a global presence with our ‘Geraldton Take a Fresh Look’ destination branding. The eye catching branding will be seen around the world with press, television and online audiences.”

Following their departure from Geraldton the yachts will race anticlockwise round the south coast of Australia to Queensland via New Zealand.  The fleet is expected to arrive to an equally warm reception on the Gold Coast in mid December before heading north to Singapore.

Gold Coast Mayor, Ron Clarke, said the Gold Coast is thrilled to be a sponsor and the community was looking forward to welcoming the yachts in December.

“We aim to provide memorable local events that capture the spirit of Clipper and the Gold Coast, as well as providing an international presence at stopovers globally,” he said.

The Race Team


Ian Takes on the World

On 31st July this year Ian Geraghty will commence achieving the ambition of a lifetime – he will race around the world in a sailing boat. Ian explains in his own words what this amazing challenge will entail:

“When the starting gun goes off for the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race in July 2011 the fleet of ten sleek, stripped down 68-foot yachts will embark on a full circumnavigation of the globe. The racetrack is 40,000 miles long and it will take eleven months to complete the circumnavigation. The race is divided in to a series of eight legs and crews can decide how many of these to compete in. (Ian will compete in all eight.) There are 15 individual races in total contained within the eight legs and (just like in Formula One) points are awarded at the end of each race, building towards a championship total. This means that you can put a poor result behind you and head to the start of the next race with the possibility of gaining maximum points as you lead the field in.

Ian Geraghty

The crew members of each yacht will be pitting themselves against all the elements have to throw at us. It will be a mixture of long, tactical ocean races lasting many weeks, where endurance is tested to the limit and short, technical sprints. Weather will range from virtually flat calms to raging seas and storm force winds, enough to test the mettle of even the bravest of us.

I want to make this journey count, not just for me but for other people too, so I’m raising funds for Sail 4 Cancer. I hope you’ll join with me in supporting them.”

Take a look at Ian’s own website and his blog and sponsor him via this link http://www.sail4cancer.org/IanGeraghtyClipperWorld

Please donate to a great cause, Sail 4 Cancer, via my website www.iangeraghty.co.uk

A request to donate to my charity Sail 4 Cancer. I am fundraising for Sail 4 Cancer in the lead up to and during the Clipper Round the World Race. For details of my adventure and a link to the charity page please visit my website www.iangeraghty.co.uk. Sail 4 Cancer is an organisation that aims to improve the quality of life for individuals and their families who have been affected by cancer. The charity offers a variety of sailing experiences for individuals and their families affected by cancer, the recently bereaved and carers thereby giving them the opportunity to switch off from the realities of everyday life.

Southampton to host start of the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race  

The Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race will start from the historic maritime city of Southampton on the south coast of England on Sunday 31 July 2011.
At 40,000 miles the event is the world’s longest sailing race and will take the ten identical 68-foot ocean racing yachts almost a year to complete their circumnavigation of the globe.

Taking on the elements


“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that
you didn’t do than by the ones you did,” Clipper Race Chairman and
Founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo non-stop
around the world, quotes Mark Twain as another fleet of intrepid
adventurers get ready to start the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht
Round the world crew member, Ben Goodall will be amongst the crew taking on
the planet’s most extreme sailing conditions during the eighth edition of the
world’s longest yacht race.
“I’m looking forward to the whole thing!” exclaims the Clinical Psychologist, who
will log 40,000 miles over the course of his circumnavigation.
“I’ve said to people during training when they’ve asked ‘why are you doing it?’ I
said ‘well growing up there were so many oceans I wanted to experience: the
Pacific, the Southern Ocean; and of course you’ve got the various ports we race
into, that was that decision made.’”
It wasn’t until Crew Allocation that Ben discovered he was a De Lage Landen
crew member and would be racing on board the first ever Dutch entry in the
Clipper Race.
“Crew Allocation was a really good day, really exciting and very well organised
and it was very nice to meet all the crew,” reveals the 30-year-old soon after
completing his Level 1 training course.
“The whole of the training was a fantastic experience and a really good bonding
experience with everybody. We had an excellent skipper and first mate in
Brendan and Vicky and during the week I learnt an awful lot.”
Ben’s Clipper adventure will stretch over eleven months as he races across the
world’s greatest oceans, visiting 13 countries on six continents and forcing his
friends and family to become fixated with all things race viewer related.
“Some of my friends and family think I’m mad and some of them think I’m very,
very brave but everyone has been very supportive and they think it’s brilliant.
“They love the idea of Clipper and they’ve all been watching Against the Tide and
checking the website for news so it’s all very exciting.”

Portsmouth News 7th May

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo and non-stop around the
world, can never be accused of leading a boring existence. His philosophy is
‘You’ve only got one life, so why not paint it in bright colours?’ he says.
‘Don’t use pastel shades. Make the most of it – get out there, throw
yourselves into it!’
He’s talking about the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race, an event he
founded that gives people from all walks of life the chance to sign up to race
40,000 miles around the world.
More than 360 adventurers travelled
from across the globe to
Southampton last weekend to
discover which of the 10 teams
competing in the race they will
Three-quarters of the 489 men and
women who will be taking part in
this gruelling challenge of a lifetime
came together to meet their skippers
and new team-mates, travelling from as far afield as Singapore, Australia, New
York and Chile.
The crews come from backgrounds as varied as marketing executives, nurses,
bankers, carpenters, IT specialists, engineers and chief executives,
representing more than 40 nationalities. Almost half of them had never sailed
before embarking on their training for the world’s longest ocean race.
Last Saturday the reality of their participation in the race truly begins to kick
in; with a skipper in place, team strategies start to take shape, roles are
assigned to the crew and, with not long to the race start on July 31, the
countdown is on.
The race, organised by a team based in Gosport, will be contested by 10
identical stripped-down 68-foot racing yachts, each sponsored by a city,
region or country. Already confirmed for Clipper 11-12 are the Keppel
Corporation-sponsored Singapore and, representing China’s Olympic sailing
city, Qingdao, both entering the race for the fourth time.
Returning for a second time is Visit Finland, backed by the Finnish Tourist
Board. And making their debut in the race are Derry-Londonderry, celebrating
their status as UK City of Culture 2013, and De Lage Landen, sponsored by the
global provider of asset-based financing programmes of the same name and
which will race under the Dutch flag. The names of the remaining five yachts
will be revealed in the coming weeks.
This will be the eighth time that Sir Robin’s teams of amateur sailors will
circumnavigate the planet, taking the number of people who have taken part
to almost 3,000. He wanted to make ocean racing available to everyone,
regardless of nationality or background.
This year’s crews will put themselves in the expert hands of 10 professional
skippers entrusted with getting their yachts around the world and safely
Sir Robin says: ‘Leading a team in a race around the world is one of the
hardest and most challenging jobs that any skipper could ever undertake and
we’re confident our 10 skippers are up to this challenge.
‘They have all been through a lengthy and rigorous selection process and we
have chosen a group of exceptional individuals as our race skippers.
‘They have the ability to draw the line between competitiveness and safety
while, at the same time, motivating the crew to retain their focus during races
lasting several weeks at a time, whether it be through roaring gales and
towering seas or the frustration of tricky calm spells.’
One of the crew members is Darren Hicks from Portsmouth. The 29-year-old
technical account manager is doing legs seven and eight of the global voyage.
Darren says: ‘I have always been passionate about the sea and really want to
challenge myself with something life-changing. How could I not?’
So what is he most looking forward to?
‘There’s not much that I’m not looking forward to, but I think flying halfway
round the world and sailing back is pretty immense. Also I’m looking forward
to building some great new friendships.’
But Darren knows it’s going to be a massive test.
‘The hardest part of the trip will be getting used to life on board. Initially it will
be a steep learning curse with close quarters, 24-hour racing, adapting sleep
patterns etc. But that is also a big part of the challenge I’m looking for.’
Another man who has signed up for the adventure is Ian Geraghty. The 52-
year-old event manager from Southsea is doing the complete voyage and
says: ‘I’m doing this to fulfill a lifetime ambition to circumnavigate the
He adds: ‘I’m looking forward to the competitive element, the physical and
mental challenge, plus the excitement of visiting new places and meeting new
Ian thinks the hardest part of the trip will be working ‘effectively and
competitively’ 24 hours a day as a team and team member.

Madeira secures a place on the race track


Madeira has secured a visit by the ten-
strong fleet competing in the Clipper 11-12
Round the World Yacht Race which, at
40,000 miles, is the world’s longest race.
Quinta do Lorde Marina on the Portuguese
archipelago will be the first port of call after
the stripped out, ocean racing yachts depart
the south coast of England on 31 July. The
fleet is expected to arrive in Madeira
between 8 and 10 August this year.
Mr Ricardo Sousa, CEO of Quinta do Lorde
Marina, says, “The choice of Quinta do Lorde
Marina for this stopover is the recognition of our
capacity to host great racing events and the
quality support service we provide to them. We
look forward to receiving the Clipper fleet and
crew and will ensure their visit to Madeira Island
is memorable.”
Madeira’s Tourism Secretary, Mrs Conceição
Estudante, says, “It is with great honour and
pleasure that Madeira was chosen to be the first
stopover of the international Clipper 11-12
Round the World Yacht Race.
“The International projection obtained through
this event is essential to promote our credentials
to the yachting world. In fact, the visit of this
great event is an opportunity to promote and to
push nautical tourism and its potential on the
“At the moment Madeira offers excellent
conditions to such great events like the Clipper
Race, with three modern marinas on Madeira’s
south coast, professional support services and
the beautiful Island of Porto Santo, whose
quality has been recognized internationally.”
The 68-foot Clipper yachts, each of which is
sponsored by a city, region, country or company
around the world, will be berthed at Quinta do
Lorde Marina, located on the southeast point of
Madeira Island. Quinta do Lorde Marina is
located in Ponta de São Lourenço, a
mesmerising peninsula known for its stunning
sea views and natural beauty. Inspired by the
island’s traditional architecture, the unique
resort, which is scheduled to be completed in
spring 2012, will resemble a picturesque coastal
village and includes a wide range of modern
facilities to ensure utmost comfort and
relaxation for visitors to the stopover.
As the only event of its kind that is crewed by
people from all walks of life – more than 500
crew will be taking part in Clipper 11-12 of
whom nearly 40 percent have never sailed
before signing up. A 32-day comprehensive
training programme ensures they are equipped
with all the skills required to compete in this
challenging event but their first week, putting
them into practice for real, will test them to the
full. The beautiful islands of Madeira which are
renowned for their stunning scenery as well as
providing a warm welcome and a peaceful
setting will therefore be a welcome sight to the
tired crews in which they can recoup before
their first ocean crossing of the race.
The race was established 15 years ago by Sir
Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo
and non-stop around the world, in order to give
ordinary people the chance to do something
truly extraordinary. More people have climbed
Everest than have raced around the world under
Sir Robin says, “The Clipper fleet first visited
Madeira during the inaugural Clipper Round the
World Yacht Race back in 1996. At that time they
offered the crews a stopover to remember and
I’m sure this time round it will be no exception.
Our event offers host ports the chance to
showcase their facilities to an international
audience of more than half a billion people. In
addition to this, the spend generated by the
crews and their visiting friends and families
delivers a significant economic impact for the