After another very tight finish, Garmin claimed second place in Race 8 of the Clipper Race from Da Nang, Vietnam to Qingdao, China just 3 nautical miles behind race winner Derry~Londonderry~Doire.
It was a tough and tactically demanding race with a lot of headwind sailing. During the last 24 hours the leading boats were hit by a storm with 50 knots of wind and gusts up to 70 knots.
Here are Garmin skipper Ashley Skett’s first words when arriving in Qingdao:
“It is great to be here. In one word I would sum this race up as varied. We’ve had pretty much every navigational challenge you could imagine out there, including fishing fleets and a very severe storm, so it has been pretty tough going. We worked really hard to get the boat here in one piece and that is the main thing, but to get a podium place for the third time in a row is really great. We’re really happy with that.
“We’ve broken the curse for third place and now we have to break the curse on second place. I really do feel like it is only a matter of time until we win that top spot.”
Garmin had a tough battle with Derry~Londonderry~Doire during the second part of the race for the ocean sprint and scoring gate extra points.
“We were leading for a while in this race, but unfortunately we ran into a bit of a wind hole which set us back a bit,” said Skett. “Derry~Londonderry~Doire came from nowhere and took us a bit by surprise. We’ll learn from it and won’t let it happen again. First place is only a matter of time away.”
Below is a VIRB XE video featuring Garmin and skipper Ashley Skett after just completing the ocean sprint.
Now, Garmin and the rest of the fleet will enjoy the hospitality in Qingdao before the start of Race 9 on March 20th. Race 9 is the longest leg of the entire race, where the fleet takes on the Pacific Ocean with the course set for Seattle, WA.