Designed by Dubois Naval Architects, one of the World's foremost yacht design houses, and built by Shanghai Double Happiness Yachts in China, the new Jersey Clipper yacht is one of a ten-strong fleet to be raced by international teams of 17 crew and a professional skipper in the 35,000 mile Clipper 05-06 Race, which sets sail from Liverpool (UK) on 18 September 2005.
The fleet of ten identical yachts, termed Dubois 68s and all built from a single mould, will provide their crews with the fastest round the world ocean racers in the non-professional field. Jersey's entry will be skippered by Mark TAYLOR (41) from Stoke Flemming in Devon, who joins the Jersey Clipper campaign from a strong financial background and who also brings a wealth of yachting experience and leadership skills to the team.
The Island's third participation in the Clipper Race was secured by the Jersey Clipper Committee, chaired by Pierre HORSFALL, CBE, and has been made possible through sponsorship by the Jersey branch of Swiss merchant bank UBS and property development and construction company Dandara Jersey Ltd.
The Naming Ceremony marks the start of the celebrations for the 60th anniversary of the Island's liberation from the occupying German forces, culminating in a Royal Visit on Liberation Day, Monday 9 May, by HM The Queen and HRH Prince Philip.
The proceedings will commence with footage of the Jersey Clipper's victory on the last race and will be followed by interviews with key people involved in the campaign - such as the Jersey Clipper Committee, crew members past and present, and the campaign sponsors UBS and Dandara.
After the Naming Ceremony, a rowing boat will also be set on its way by the Bailiff from Jersey Clipper; a re-enactment of a wartime escape from the Island. A flotilla of island vessels and warships will be in the Harbour as well as the Jersey tug with her water cannons.
Welcoming the launch of the Jersey Clipper, Sir Robin KNOX-JOHNSTON, Chairman of Clipper Ventures plc, the AIM-listed company that has commissioned the ten-strong fleet, commented: 'Jersey Clipper is a credit to both the Dubois design team and the successful build team at Shanghai Double Happiness Yachts. Myself, the Clipper shore team and, most importantly, the crews that will race her around the World, are extremely excited about putting Jersey Clipper through her paces on the water. Today's naming ceremony marks the official start of the new Jersey Clipper race campaign and we wish her every success in the Island's bid to retain its race title.'
With nine Channel Islanders already signed-up, if you are thinking of joining the crew of Jersey Clipper as she fights to retain her title in the gruelling 35,000-mile circumnavigation, now is the time to apply to Clipper Ventures.