HotelPlanner.com, Garmin, and Liverpool 2018 Join Fleet in Punta del Este

22 September 2017

The latest arrivals fought a close battle during the last stretch into Punta del Este, Uruguay with HotelPlanner.com crossing the line in fifth place, Garmin in sixth, and Liverpool 2018 in seventh.

HotelPlanner.com maintained a mid-fleet position for much of the 33-day race and pulled into fourth place during the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint. But the team, led by Derry-Londonderry Skipper Conall Morrison, got caught in the wind hold off the coast of Brazil, resulting in HotelPlanner.com crossing the finish line at 07:52:57 UTC on Friday 22 September.

The Skipper says: “It’s nice to be here on firm ground.

“I’m happy, really happy. Fifth is good. I think Greenings might get a place because they have been very fast over the last few days. We are very happy, we didn’t break anything, no sail damage really so that’s a plus looking ahead to the rest of the race.”

Adam Cristol, 31 from Hertfordshire, UK, will be staying with the team for the next race to his place of birth, Cape Town, South Africa. Adam says: “It was really incredible, a very special experience.

“A highlight had to be seeing the moon rise and set, that was pretty spectacular, as it was a blood moon. Seeing phosphoresce and dolphins in the water at night was also pretty special, and just being with the team. Sharing that experience with them was great.”

For Garmin, led by Belgian Skipper Gaetan Thomas, standings during Leg 1 fluctuated to a greater extent, with the highlight coming when the team collected one bonus point for setting the third fastest time of 13 hours and 28 minutes during the Elliot Brown Ocean Sprint.

Gerardo ‘Gerry’ Injoque is the first Peruvian to do the full circumnavigation with the Clipper Race. He says: “I am extremely happy that we have arrived here in Punta del Este. It was a big surprise to see my father. A really nice way to finish what has been an amazing adventure.”

Nell Wyatt, 58 from Wiltshire, UK, is also doing the full circumnavigation and says: “It was fantastic. It is great to be on land again.

“[The toughest part of the race] was the relentlessness. The long days, the short sleeps, and just concentrating all the time. But we bonded really well, we’re very close, we had a great time. We had a great Skipper, good leadership, and I had a really, really good time.”

Liverpool 2018, which left its home port on August 20 in front of huge crowds to start the 2017-18 edition of the race, was striking in its bold pink livery when the team arrived in Punta del Este. For Liverpool 2018, it was in many ways a race from home to home, as the first Uruguayan round the world crew member, Nano Antia, sailed into his hometown of Punta del Este.

Nano was welcomed by his family and friends, and says: "You can never expect things from the ocean, so every day was a surprise.

"It was really interesting, really exciting, and in the end, everyone just came together. Maybe 300nM from the finish, all the boats were fighting for fourth, fifth, sixth place. It's incredible after so many miles it ended up being so tight.

"I really enjoyed it. Every day, even the bad days, because on the bad days, you learn more. So every day is really a good day."

Liverpool 2018 maintained a steady position in the fleet and wise tactical moves out of the Bay of Biscay and the Doldrums Corridor saw the team peak on the leader board.

Final standings for Leg 1 will be confirmed after redress is applied to Visit Seattle and Greenings.

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