Clipper into Singapore
The Australian team finished at 0929 local time (0229 UTC) after closing a 20-mile gap on Cape Breton Island in the final 12 hours of the race.
Race 5, from Geraldton, Western Australia to Singapore began on 3 January and the course has delivered some of the most challenging conditions to date for the crews, all of whom have put their normal lives on hold to take part in the Clipper Race, whether for a single leg, or for the whole of the ten-month, 35,000-mile race.
During the race Cork, one of the ten 68-foot ocean racing yachts, hit a submerged reef and the crew, who had abandoned to life rafts, were taken on board two of the other boats, California and Team Finland. Qingdao and Edinburgh Inspiring Capital were also involved in the operation, as well as Uniquely Singapore and Hull & Humber, who stood by to offer assistance if required.
As a number of teams suspended racing during the incident, the final results will be subject to ratification once all the skippers' declarations have been received by the Race Committee before being confirmed.
In the meantime, the crew of Cape Breton Island is celebrating their first line honours in the competition in which they have performed at a consistently high level.
Cape Breton Island's success has been well received in Sydney, the Nova Scotian port that will play host to the Clipper fleet in June this year.
Lauri Taylor, Development Officer at Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation, sent a message of congratulations to the crew, saying: "Congratulations Cape Breton Island crew members! We are SO proud of you! You sailed an excellent race and earned this position and we wish we were there with you tonight to celebrate your victory! Everyone on Cape Breton Island is cheering for you. You have done your home island proud!"
The fleet will arrive at Marina at Keppel Bay, owned by Uniquely Singapore team sponsor, Keppel Corporation, at 10am on Saturday 23 January. Guest of honour at the colourful ceremony will be Singapore's Senior Minister, Goh Chok Tong, who named Uniquely Singapore when she was launched ahead of the Clipper 05-06 Race.
"The international following and goodwill that the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race continues to generate will help promote Singapore as Asia¹s destination to live, work and play. Keppel is happy to contribute to the vibrancy of this southern waterfront with such international events at the Marina at Keppel Bay on Keppel Island," said Ms Wang Look Fung, General Manager of Group Corporate Communications, Keppel Corporation Limited.
Mr Rostam Umar, Executive Director of Communications and Human Resources and Organisational Development at Singapore Tourism Board, Uniquely Singapore¹s team partner, said: "We welcome the crew members of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race to Singapore. We see the race as a platform to showcase Singapore as a destination for international sporting events and where visitors have the opportunity to enjoy many exciting leisure experiences. Events such as Clipper Round the World Yacht Race strengthen Singapore's image as one of Asia¹s leading entertainment capitals with a diverse calendar of events year round."
The Clipper 09-10 Race started from the Humber on the north east coast of England on 13 September and will return to there on 17 July 2010. It is the only event in the world where people from all walks of life can take on the challenge of a lifetime and race around the globe on stripped down 68-foot ocean racing yachts.