19 October 2017

It was a close fight right up until the final stretch for ninth placed HotelPlanner.com and tenth placed GREAT Britain, who spent much of Race 2: The Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms in a drag race behind the leading pack.

Despite some intense competition from GREAT Britain, HotelPlanner.com managed to pull ahead and forge a 30 nautical mile advantage during the final hours of racing. The team remained in front to cross the line at 13:33:34 UTC and claim ninth place on the leader board.

The crew on board HotelPlanner.com, led by Skipper Conall Morrison, worked hard and sailed a very consistent race. The team spent nine days in ninth place, peaking on the leader board in sixth position on day six. Speaking on arrival in Cape Town, Conall said: “Ahoy Cape Town! It’s awesome here; the view, Table Mountain. There is a nice reception here, lots of supporters with orange flags.”

On weather conditions during Race 2, he added: “We had the biggest winds of the race so far. We had 50 knots for about a day and a half and then everything in between.”

Returning home to South Africa, HotelPlanner.com crew member Adam Cristol said: “Great to be back! What a way to return!

“For me [this Leg] gave a lot more of the extreme conditions which is pretty immense and what I signed up for, that adventure side of things. The HotelPlanner.com team gelled extremely well again together, we shared some lovely moments on the ocean.”

Just as the sun was setting on Table Mountain, GREAT Britain crossed the finish line at 17:18:56 UTC, becoming the tenth team to finish Race 2 within 24 hours.

GREAT Britain went into the second of thirteen races on top of the overall standings after playing its Joker Card during Race 1 from Liverpool to Punta del Este. However, the team couldn’t recreate that fourth-place result from Uruguay coming into Cape Town.

Nevertheless, spirits were high as the team completed the 3,500 nautical mile sprint across the South Atlantic, with the Skipper and crew greeted at the V&A Waterfront by Clipper Race Founder and Chairman, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, supporters, and fellow Clipper Race teams.

Reflecting on Race 2, Skipper Andy Burns said: “It was a good race, it was a little bit slower than the first race but still really good fun, great crew and we have had a ball.

On the incredible sunset approach into Cape Town, he added: “It was a last-minute decision to put the kite back up, I’m glad we did it was absolutely spectacular!”

GREAT Britain circumnavigating crew member Tessa Hicks, from Wiltshire, said: “In comparison to Race 1, this was colder, rougher, had more challenging sailing at times and was more challenging down below in the galley. But we are here, we have made it and we look forward to celebrating!

“It is fantastic to be in Cape Town. It has been a fantastic race here, we have sailed through storms and it’s great to be here now.”

HotelPlanner.com will pick up four race points for ninth place and GREAT Britain will pick up three for tenth place, but both teams will have to await the results of the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint to find out if it will gain any bonus points for Race 2: Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms.

The next team due to cross the finish line in Cape Town is Unicef which is likely to be between 0400 – 1200 UTC tomorrow. Keep an eye on the Clipper Race Viewer and ETA page for the latest.

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