Celebrations and tributes at Race 1 Prize Giving Ceremony

02 October 2015

Marina da Gloria was brought to life tonight for the Race 1 Prize Giving as crew enjoyed samba music, traditional Brazilian barbecue, and a plentiful supply of caipirinhas to get the first official race party of the series started in local style.

The evening began with a memorial service for IchorCoal’s Andy Ashman, who tragically lost his life during the race to Rio in an onboard accident. After a blessing from the Sailors' Society Chaplains from the Port of Rio de Janeiro, Andy's team mate Bruce Rogerson spoke on behalf of his crew about Andy’s lasting impression on the team, and Sapinda Rainbow Ambassador and team mate Zanele Mweni sang a song she had written for Andrew during the race.

Race Director Justin Taylor and Chief Executive William Ward awarded the Race 1 prizes alongside Paulo Senise, President of TurisRio, at Marina da Gloria, Rio de Janeiro.

LMAX Exchange was awarded the winner’s pennant for its Atlantic Trade Winds Leg 1 victory, with Qingdao accepting its pennant for second, and GREAT Britain taking third place.

LMAX Exchange CEO David Mercer attended to congratulate the crew, and told them: “You guys are truly amazing and we have all been inspired by your superb performance on the race to Rio. The challenges you overcame both physical and mental were enormous and you should all be immensely proud of yourselves and each other. Your land based LMAX Exchange team certainly could not be more proud of you.”

LMAX Exchange tops the leaderboard with 15 points. Despite crossing the Race 1 finish line in third place, GREAT Britain is second in the Overall Race Standings having received two bonus points for coming second through the Scoring Gate. It currently has 12 points which in turn means that Qingdao is third on the leaderboard with 11 points.

Mission Performance was also awarded the Andrew Ashman Memorial Plate and two extra points for its Ocean Sprint time, named in legacy of the IchorCoal crew member who was a passionate sailor.

Mission Performance completed the Ocean Sprint section of the course in 28 hours 46 minutes, beating Visit Seattle’s previously held record of 29 hours 16 minutes.

The Stormhoek Social Spirit Award, voted for almost unanimously by friends, family and supporters, went to IchorCoal in recognition of how the team pulled together to inspire everyone associated with the Clipper Race following the loss of Andy. The team was awarded a large pennant for their IchorCoal yacht and small pennants and a buff were presented to each crew member.

On behalf of Stormhoek Wines, the following message was read out to the crew: “We’ve been inspired by the way that the Clipper Race community has come together to remember Andy Ashman in the midst of racing – and how everyone has embraced the social spirit.

“While you have been busy racing across the Atlantic Ocean your supporters and fellow teammates back home have been voting for the crew that has epitomised team spirit in Race 1. So many have shown loyalty to their teams, but then in the true spirit of seamanship, gone beyond that to vote for another crew.”

At the time of writing the party and celebrations were still going strong...

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