I had originally intended blogging today about Leg 5, Race 6 from the Whitsundays in
Australia, where the yachts have spent the last few days, to Sanya in China given that race start was lunchtime today (Australian time). But last night it was announced that 3 of the boats have trouble with their onboard water-makers and, in an effort to allow replacement parts to arrive, race start would be delayed by up to 48 hours. It is hoped that the arrival window into Sanya, currently 10-15 Feb, will be unaffected.
That sail, the boats did sail earlier today UK time, completed the customary Parade of Sail, carried out their required man overboard drills, plus some other sailing practice, and then returned alongside the Coral Sea Marina Resort at Airlie Beach. Those of you who are already addicted to Race Viewer will have seen the boat tracks earlier this morning and will note that the race clock is “ticking” but currently all boats are alongside.
There are 3 races in the next leg, Race 6 from The Whitsundays to Sanya, Race 7 from Sanya to Subic Bay in the Philippines, and Race 8 from Subic Bay to Zhuhai, again in China. The arrival window into Zhuhai and the end of Leg 5 is 2-3 March and I will rejoin team UNICEF in Zhuhai on 4 March. Things on the Leaderboard are very nicely poised as we start the final 4 legs but it is interesting to remember that the first 4 Legs of the circumnavigation only comprised 5 Races. The final 4 Legs include 10 Races and I will compete in 5 of them, 2 in Leg 6 crossing the North Pacific and 3 in Leg 8 crossing the North Atlantic. This is how the Legs/Races have panned out so far:
It remains fairly tight throughout the fleet on the overall race standings. Qingdao, in 1st place overall, are 5 points ahead of Ha Long Bay, Vietnam in 2nd. They are 21 points clear of Punta del Este in 3rd, who are only 3 points clear of Visit Sanya in 4th who are only 1 point ahead of UNICEF currently in 5th. Only 10 points separate UNICEF in 5th from Go to Bermuda in 8th and they are only 5 points clear of Seattle in 11th. Qingdao, Han Long Bay Vietnam and Punta del Este (in 1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively) have all played their Jokers. No jokers have been declared for the race from The Whitsundays to Sanya. If you missed the scoring rules see Blog 76, How The Clipper Race Is Scored, published 3 September 2019.
For Diabetes UK and the National Autistic Society see
and for UNICEF UK see