Race 1 has finished with the first podium positions taken in the Clipper 2023-24 Race. After the epic Race Start from Portsmouth, UK on 3 September and the fleet bound for Puerto Sherry, the conditions have made for an interesting competition with plenty of tactical racing required from the eleven teams during this race to Spain.

This morning, the Clipper Race Office announced a shorten course due light wind conditions and the race ended at 12:00 UTC with teams sending their positions at this time (read more here)

The results of the first race of the 2023-24 edition are as follows!

Taking first place in Race 1 is... Perseverance

Second place goes to... Yacht Club Punta Del Este

And third place goes to... UNICEF

Image: Perseverance on Race 1 of the Clipper 2023-24 Race

On the first FIRST of the circumnavigation, Clipper Race Director, Mark Light said: “A huge congratulations must go to Ineke, Joss and the entire team of Perseverance, as the team has made a great start to its race campaign.

“After making a fantastic move to the north early on day two, in the English Channel, it created a superb wind angle and never looked back. A decisive move early in the race and they pretty much led the fleet from that point onwards driving forwards to pull away at every opportunity. A really strong start for them, well-deserved and they will be very proud tonight.”

Full positions as follows:

Image: Race 1 results table. Qingdao received a 6-hour time penalty earlier this week. See more here.

Dale Smyth, Deputy Race Director said: “For those of you following the Race Viewer over the last few days, you will have no doubt noticed the slow upwind progress of the fleet.

“This has been along a stretch of coastline that is more typically known for its fast sailing in the well-known “Nortada”, a consistent northerly wind, giving quick downwind spinnaker conditions. This has been caused by a low-pressure system sitting to the west which rotates air in an anticlockwise direction giving the fleet southerly winds.

"When they first entered this system near Cape Finisterre, the sailing was tough with gale force winds and steep seas and generally uncomfortable conditions. As they progressed slowly south, reefed right down, the conditions slowly eased but also moved inshore. This further hampered the fleet as they could not follow the wind inshore because of an Orca Exclusion Zone put in place by Race Management.

"The fleet was then forced to sail a fine line with the risk of crossing the Exclusion Zone and incurring a time penalty, or heading further offshore into the more windless zone near the centre of the low. Because of these factors, the time on the race course was taking much longer than anticipated and because of the deadlines for the Puerto Sherry stopover, the Race Committee decided to cease racing at 1200UTC today. Each team declared its position and the distance was measured to a virtual waypoint (Virtual Mark Rivers). This waypoint was around 100-200 miles ahead of the fleet at the time of racing being ceased so there was no advantage or disadvantage to any team in measuring to a point so distant."

Mr Koole, Team Partner of Perseverance said on his team placing in first position: “Finishing in first place is an astonishing achievement given the tough conditions of this first race.

“The crew has all the right to be extremely proud of themselves. It’s been a hard-fought victory and the team has stayed strong, helping each other through tough times makes a winning team. Again, a great achievement from all of you.

“Ineke and Joss, thank you for the victory of Perseverance.”

Image: Yacht Club Punta Del Este team yacht

With Yacht Club Punta del Este coming in second place, Commodore Juan Etcheverrito, from the sailing club the team represents, says: “Congratulations! We couldn´t have asked for a better race start! Well done on earning the scoring gate points and managing to arrive in the second position. You´ve demonstrated skills and strategy, keep it up!”

Image: Perseverance team yacht

Team Partner UNICEF said "Congratulations to UNICEF for your remarkable achievement in securing third place!

"The first race was an exciting journey, and your display of teamwork, courage and skill while enduring one of the biggest challenges around the world was exhilarating to follow.

“Your incredible performance speaks volumes about your dedication and perseverance. A huge thank you for all your amazing fundraising efforts throughout the process – well done, UNICEF!"

Image: UNICEF team yacht

Boats are estimated to begin arriving into Puerto Sherry from 1200 on Monday 11 September. Latest ETAs can be seen here.