As the Sapinda Rainbow crew participated in the annual celebrations at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund headquarters in Johannesburg yesterday, there was a GREAT surprise send off in the form of personal letters of congratulations from Acting British High Commissioner to South Africa, Martin Reynolds. The Clipper Race is featured in the UK Government’s GREAT campaign as an iconic British sporting event and example of the country’s sense of Adventure. In addition the next race will feature a GREAT Britain yacht entry.
In the letters the Acting High Commissioner said:
“On behalf of the British High Commission in Pretoria, I would like to congratulate you on being selected for the South African Sapinda Rainbow project and Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund (NMCF) ‘tag team’ taking part in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. The British government is delighted to be partnering with the organisers with a GREAT Britain yacht participating in the race and we look forward to welcoming you in Cape Town in October and hearing about your adventures.”
The Sapinda Rainbow crew left South Africa last night to come to the UK for three weeks of intensive training before heading to participate in an official launch of their global awareness and fundraising campaign for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital on 28 August at the Clipper Race village in St Katharine Docks in London before the fleet’s departure on 1 September from Tower Bridge.
Next week the GREAT Britain boat will make a complicated journey by road to Trafalgar Square where it will be officially ‘launched’ by Sports Minister the Rt Hon Hugh Robertson MP and Clipper Race chairman and founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, before going on show to the public for five days.