New skipper for London

Changes in the Clipper round the world race

Monday February 3rd 2003, Author: Loretta Spridgeon, Location: Transoceanic
Rory Gillard, a 32-year-old professional skipper from Gosport in Hampshire, will lead London’s entry in the Clipper 2002 Round the World Yacht Race.

Assuming the helm in Hawaii at the start of the third crew leg, Rory will set sail on Wednesday, 12 February 2003, commanding a 14-strong amateur crew aboard London Clipper. His experience of sailing in varied waters, from the Solent to Queensland's Sunshine Coast, will stand him in good stead for a running start with his new crew on the Hawaii to Hong Kong leg.

Acting skipper, Ed Green, successfully took over the reigns of London Clipper in Cuba after its former skipper stood down on completion of the first crew leg. Rory takes over as permanent skipper of London Clipper in Hawaii and will be looking to build upon the team’s already impressive scorecard, having so far notched up three podium places from five races.

Born in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, Rory started sailing on the Irish Sea with his family, and now lives in Gosport, Hampshire. As a full time skipper for Formula 1 Sailing Rory has just completed his second ARC, commanding a Farr 65 across the line in 3rd place. With five Cowes Weeks and three Fastnet Races also under his belt, Rory is well equipped to lead the crew of London Clipper to racing success.

No stranger to the organisers of the Clipper 2002 Race, Rory has previously skippered on the Clipper Reflex 38 fleet. Looking ahead to this next challenge, he said: "The London crew have made a great start to the eleven month race and only narrowly missed another podium finish into Hawaii, finishing fourth behind Bristol, Liverpool and Jersey.

“The team’s many followers in the capital and our supporters, London First, will be looking for continued success and I hope to rise to this challenge. Racing around the world is a lifetime ambition and I’m looking forward to some exciting sailing, close racing and a truly rewarding experience as we strive to keep London Clipper on the podium.”

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