First Clipper 2017-18 Race Yacht Branded

29 March 2017

With the race start less than six months away, the first of our twelve Clipper 70s is back on the water after having its 2017-18 race branding applied.

Emerging from the shed with its iconic red and gold hull wrap, the Qingdao yacht looks striking as it prepares to represent China’s ‘Sailing City’ for its seventh consecutive race campaign.

The Clipper Race yacht branding plays an important role in giving each race team an identity but is also an integral and very creative way for Clipper Race partners to carry their messaging around the world during the race.

The red colour of Qingdao's hull was chosen as it symbolises ‘fortune laying ahead’ and represents passion, bravery and courage. The dragon is a symbol of fortune and success and on Qingdao's hull, it is fighting the waves and roaring its way through the oceans with bravery and good spirit.

The prominence of the dragon also represents the ancient standing totem spirit which embodies persistence, bravery and faith, combining traditional Chinese cultural elements with Qingdao’s unique features.

Clipper Race Operations and Logistics Manager, Rob Carter, has been overseeing the transformation: He says: “The Clipper Race yachts are branded to the specifications provided by their Team Partner and this can take the form of a variety of different forms from full hull wraps, which give a head-to-toe covering of the hull, to a simple company logo, corporate message or anything in between.

“There are a few area restrictions that we, as the race organisers, impose such as the first three meters from the bow moving aft which are reserved for the Clipper Race logo. Otherwise the Team Partner has free rein!”

With no delays, full hull wraps such as Qingdao’s take four to five people around four days to complete. If time allows, a hull wrap can be completed by as little as two skilled applicators.

The hull wrap material is a marine grade self-adhesive vinyl that is digitally printed and laminated. The vinyl’s highly durable properties mean that it strong enough to withstand tough sailing conditions, although each boat will be equipped with a repair kit so that any minor repairs from exposure to the elements can be done by teams in port.

The 2017-18 edition will be the current fleet’s third circumnavigation and all twelve will be branded over the next few months in preparation for the race start this summer.