Serious upsets in the Clipper 2002 Race have seen a great weekend for some and a Sunday horribilis for most of the others!
Golden boy Simon ROWELL, skippering Jersey Clipper, has almost certainly been enjoying three Shredded Wheat biscuits for breakfast. 24 hours ago his Jersey team had a 27 miles lead on second placed Hong Kong, was 67 miles clear of archrival Bristol and 91 miles ahead of London in eighth place. 24 hours later Simon had doubled his lead over Hong Kong, more than doubled his lead over Bristol (now 145 miles) and made a massive 104 mile gain on the back markers.
This is an amazing turn of events as both Jersey and Hong Kong have managed to keep going, while all the other Clipper yachts have virtually stopped. Although the weather maps show no significant reason for this, there is clearly a small trough running through the area and Jersey and Hong Kong were fortunate enough to scrape in just above it.
Hardest hit was Ross DANIEL and his crew in New York Clipper, who have managed just eight miles in the last 12 hours.
Liverpool's skipper, Adam KYFFIN, will not be having a good start to his birthday after losing a massive 51 miles to the leader but he will be relieved that, after the gap between them and Bristol opened to three miles yesterday afternoon, he has reeled Bristol back in again. He may however need a bit of positive thinking to convince his crew this was a 'good schedule.'
Rupert PARKHOUSE and the Glasgow crew will be wondering what they did wrong. Having been tucked up a mere 16 miles behind Jersey three days ago their world has slowly fallen apart. Their last 12-hour run of 28 miles means they are now 147 miles astern of them and have been eased into 6th place.
Duty skipper, Rory GILLARD on London, reports that, "what wind there is, is all over the place. They feel they have exhausted all their means of retaining sanity, including singing, and so for everyone's sake we hope they have a better schedule next time."
Cape Town's brave move to the west ran out of steam yesterday but their 12-hour run of 55 miles was still a lot better than the others, bar the two leading inky swots. This has meant they have taken New York's scalp and moved into sixth place and are only 10 miles astern of third placed Bristol, on a Distance-to-finish (DTF) basis.
The South Africans have got themselves well displaced to the west of the others and if they get a good break they could have the last laugh. Roger STEVEN-JENNINGS has worked hard over the last 10 months at getting the best odds at the bookies and they must now be worth an each way bet.
Clipper 2002 - Race 14 Positions
||Distance to Finish (nautical miles)