News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – We’ve been tracking their movements for months and now, for the first-time ever, the Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA), race organizers, and sailing enthusiasts around the world will welcome a fleet of eleven identical 70-foot ocean racing yachts, accompanied by extraordinary crews to Bermuda for The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race on June 13 – 19, 2022 at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club.
More than 150 Race Crew from diverse walks of life, all age groups and more than 22 nations will be arriving on the island. Included in the fleet is our very own GoToBermuda yacht which has braved an awe-inspiring 35,000 nautical miles and four ocean crossings so far, along with the other vessels. Flying the Bermuda flag high as it birthed in many ports during the race, GoToBermuda made its first podium appearance, taking third place in Race 11: Seattle Pacific Challenge from Seattle to Panama. After an exceptionally close contest, with a nail-biting wait over the final days for the results, GoToBermuda finished behind Punta del Este in second and Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam in first.
On board the Clipper 70 ocean racing yacht, competing with his team was Matt Stephens, Bermuda Race Crew Ambassador. Many will continue with the marathon ocean race of more than 40,000-nautical miles, with new crew also joining the yachts in Hamilton for the next leg of the race.
“We’re delighted to welcome the Clipper Fleet to Bermuda for the first time. This is an extraordinary competition challenging everyday people to test their limits in an adventure of a lifetime.
“We look forward to hosting the hundreds of crew, their family members, and visiting friends and we invite all of Bermuda to enjoy the slate of BTA-Clipper activities available this week.“
Ms Berkeley added: “I would like to salute Matt Stephens, Bermuda Ambassador, and participant in the Seattle to Panama leg for representing Bermuda aboard the GoToBermuda vessel and showcasing our island’s famed hospitality..”
Clipper Race Founder and Chairman, Sir Robin Knox Johnston said: “For the first time on the Clipper Race, the fleet will be sailing into Bermuda. As an island steeped in sailing and racing history, it will be fantastic to see the boats sail into the prestigious Royal Bermuda Yacht Club- I’m sure they will receive a warm and well-deserved island welcome.
“Working with the Bermuda Tourism Authority has been nothing short of exceptional- their professionalism, hospitality and helpfulness has been brilliant, and I’d like to thank them for their support and partnership. The stopover will be an excellent experience for the crew and their supporters, and the programme of events will provide locals and tourists with the opportunity to see the boats, meet the crew and learn about the race.”
There will be plenty of free activities taking place while these incredible yachts are in port. Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s happening over the course of the week.
FREE RACING YACHT TOURS
Step on board a Clipper 70; one of eleven in the world’s largest matched fleet of ocean racing yachts. Your tour above and below deck is led by members of the Clipper Race Crew who have raced around 6,000 nautical miles from Seattle, USA to Bermuda to be your host. Discover for yourself what it takes to become an ocean racer with the Clipper Race. Be sure to book a tour by visiting the official Clipper Race website.
VIRTUAL RACING YACHT TOUR
Brought to you live from the Clipper Race fleet in Hamilton, Bermuda your host – a Clipper Race Skipper – will take you on a tour of a Clipper 70. Check out the nav station, galley area and living conditions. Imagine yourself on the bow or helm of the 70-foot yacht. Visit the official Clipper Race website to sign up to the event.
RACE DEPARTURE CEREMONY
Taking place on Sunday, June 19 at 9am you don’t want to miss as Race Crew and their Skippers will gather on their yachts ahead of a dockside briefing and ceremony at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Then eleven yachts will slip lines at 11am and each team will receive an emotional farewell as they wave final goodbye and throw off their lines, with their next stop being New York.
DEPARTURE PARADE OF SAIL
Catch the Parade of Sail and a practice Race Start from 1200pm – 1330pm. Be sure to get the best view from venues such as from the RBYC, Albuoy’s Point and Barr’s Bay Park. Following training drills, the fleet will then leave the Great Sound and head towards the Le Mans start area via the South Channel. Race 13 will start south of St David’s Island, beginning the 700nm race to New York.
Media drop-in scheduled for arrival of Clipper Round the World Yacht Race in Bermuda
The Clipper Race, which trains people from all walks of life to become ocean racers, is about to arrive in Bermuda for the first time in the event’s history. The arrival marks the end of Leg 7: The USA Coast-to-Coast leg, where the fleet has sailed almost 6,000 nautical miles from Seattle, via the Panama Canal to Bermuda. The fleet is due to arrive on Monday 13 June.
Media drop-in- Wednesday 15 June – 10:00-12:00
The media drop-in at Royal Bermuda Yacht Club is an opportunity to tour the GoToBermuda Clipper 70 racing yacht, meet the Race Crew and GoToBermuda Ambassador Matt Stephens, and hear about their experiences. You will also have the chance to meet the team’s Skipper/First Mate and the Clipper Race founder, Sir Robin Knox Johnston.
The multi-nation Clipper Race Crew consists of women and men from diverse walks of life, ranging from 18-70+ years old. Civil Servants from England race shoulder to shoulder with Gap Year students from the Netherlands and Teachers from New Zealand and farmers from the UK. The Clipper Race crew had no previous sailing experience before signing up for the four weeks of intensive and rigorous training prior to their race. Each team is led by a professional Skipper and First Mate, and crew can sign up for one stage, multiple legs, or the entire 40,000 nautical mile circumnavigation.
Media sail- Friday 17 June- 0900-13:30
Take to the water on board Clipper 70 racing yacht: GoToBermuda. Crewed by the Skipper and Race Crew who have just raced from Seattle, it will be a fascinating first-hand glimpse into life on board the ocean racing yachts. Interviews with crew available. Lifejackets and wet-weather gear will be provided.