Qingdao Ambassador Selection Underway

25 November 2016

Qingdao’s search for Chinese crew members to participate in the Clipper 2017-18 Race is officially underway, with selection trials set to take place in January 2017.

The call for applicants extends to Chinese nationals around the globe and hundreds of candidates are expected to register online between 21 November to 20 December2016, hoping to be invited to trial in the New Year and compete for a place to become one of the sixteen selected Chinese ambassadors to represent Qingdao, China’s ‘Sailing City’.

Chinese candidates invited to the first round of trials in January will undergo a written test in English, with subjects including common knowledge and politics, sailing knowledge and marine safety before being interviewed by a judging panel in English language.

Alongside strong English language skills, candidates are expected to show a good level of physical fitness and will face a swimming and running test during the second round of trial.. Those lucky enough to make it to the final stage will then have the opportunity to demonstrate their team work skills and ability to work under difficult and extreme conditions as they undertake sail and skills training ahead of final selection.

After three stages of intense trials, the sixteen ambassadors will be named as part of the Qingdao crew and undergo official Clipper Race training in the UK. Upon successful completion, they will officially earn their place on board the Qingdao team, with two Chinese ambassadors stepping on board during each of the eight legs in the eleventh edition of the race next year.

Clipper Race Crew Recruitment Manager, David Cusworth will be joining the selection panel in Qingdao. He says: “The successful candidates will join a team which includes people of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities. During this unique endurance challenge they will learn to live and work together in challenging yet rewarding situations whilst racing the world’s oceans representing Qingdao.

“I can’t wait to meet the candidates during the 4 day programme to determine who will join the Qingdao team for the 2017-18 Race.”

More than 40 ambassadors have had the opportunity to take part in the race so far, with Qingdao proud to have been a Host Port and Team Partner for six consecutive editions and extending its partnership to the 2019-20 Race.

Mr. Ji Gaoshang, General Director of the Qingdao Sports Bureau says: “It's with a great pleasure to hear that the Clipper 2017-18 Race Qingdao ambassador crew recruitment has started, firstly, on behalf of Qingdao Municipal Government, Qingdao Major International Sailing Events (Festivals) Organizing Committee, I invite more brave hearts to join in the big Clipper Race family and become one of the Qingdao crew.

“In 2005, Qingdao first sponsored the Clipper Race, the world's largest non-professional sailing event and continued the partnership for 6 consecutive races expanding 12 years, which has contributed much to Qingdao's global promotion, not only as China’s but also Asia’s leading location for international sailing events - in addition to developing Qingdao as a powerful maritime city with a strong ‘blue’ marine economy and creating a leisure sport cluster along the route of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. Now Qingdao has had the privilege of the sole host port city with 8 consecutive races in history, and set to make more in the future.

“My friends, you're just one step away from an ocean adventure. If you have a dream for ocean sailing, then we're offering you an opportunity to make it come true! Sign up to join the Qingdao team, let's sail with our hearts to success!”

In addition to bringing thousands of crew, visitors, VIPs and business partners to Qingdao and China to boost tourism, the twelve-year partnership with the Clipper Race has helped enhance and encourage sailing in the city, with ambassador Vicky Song becoming the first Chinese woman to sail around the world in the Clipper 2013-14 Race.

The next edition of the Clipper Race will leave the UK in late August 2017 and reach Qingdao in March 2018.

To read more about our long-established partnership with Qingdao, click here.

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