Clipper 2002 Race
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Liverpool played host to the start of the Clipper Race for the first time during the 2002-03 edition, the fourth final race for the Clipper 60s fleet.
Race start day bought with it the worst storm Liverpool had experienced 100 days forced the Race Committee to postpone the start for 24 hours.
“Race start stands out for so many reasons,” says David Cusworth, a crew member on board Liverpool.
“Saturday was a hive of activity preparing for the start, with over 100,000 people milling around Albert Dock.
“On Sunday the weather closed in and the decision was made to postpone the start. We eventually left in bright sunshine on Monday!”
The eight Clipper 60 yachts would retire after this edition of the race, making way for the second fleet of ocean racing yachts, the Clipper 68s.
“Being the final circumnavigation on the original Clipper Race fleet was very emotional, almost the end of an era. We knew a new fleet of boats were being commissioned but had no idea how they would look. So for us, the Clipper 60s are the original and best yachts.”
It was Simon Rowell who guided Jersey to overall victory beating Richard Butler’s Bristol team by just two points.
“There were so many highlights,” continues David.
Winning in to Cuba. Coming last into Japan. Both huge stand out moments in the race for different reasons and actually the sense of accomplishment of crossing the mighty Pacific, which did its best to beat us, even though we came last – is perhaps my strongest memory from the whole race.”