The first group of Clipper Race yachts has begun the transit through the Panama Canal, a true feat of engineering, a bucket list tick for any sailor and a highlight of Leg 7: The USA Coast-to-Coast Leg. The fleet will be transiting through in groups, with the first group of yachts having departed earlier today (Tuesday 31 May). After making good progress and a swift refuel in Costa Rica, it’s fantastic news that Qingdao is due to arrive in Panama earlier than expected, and the team will be able to join the fleet for the Le Mans start of Race 12.

Timings for the next few days ahead of the start of Race 12 are as follows:

Tuesday 31 May

The first group of Clipper Race yachts slipped lines early this morning (local time LT) from Flamenco Island Marina. GoToBermuda, WTC Logistics, Punta del Este, Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam and Unicef will be the first boats to transit the canal, and will arrive in Shelter Bay Marina, Panama later today.

From approximately 0800 Local Time, you can see the yachts make their way through the Miraflores Lock by watching the webcam.

Wednesday 1 June

Imagine your Korea, Seattle, Dare To Lead, Zhuhai and Visit Sanya, China will slip lines at 0530LT from Flamenco Island Marina.

Qingdao is due to arrive in Flamenco Island Marina between 0700-0800LT

Thursday 2 June

Qingdao will transit the Panama Canal from 0530LT and dock briefly in Shelter Bay Marina.

At 1800LT, following essential briefings and preparation, the Clipper Race fleet will slip lines from Shelter Bay Marina. Qingdao, after completing the Panama Canal transit, will depart Shelter Bay Marina later that evening, and from 2100LT onwards, all eleven racing yachts will proceed to the Le Mans start area.

Friday 3 June

The Clipper Race fleet will motorsail to the Le Mans start area in the Panama Approaches, and complete MOB training drills.

Saturday 4 June

All eleven teams will rendezvous at the Le Mans start area, and Race 12 will get underway at approximately midday local time. The Le Mans start will be led by lead Skipper Ian Wiggin on Unicef.

Editor’s note: Timings are in local time (LT) and subject to change depending on transit times and Qingdao’s ETA into Panama.

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