AFTER a crash with a fellow race yacht departing Cape Town, Rick Whitehouse didn’t get off to a good start for stage three of the Clipper 70 Round the World yacht race.
“It was a technical error, and unfortunately we were waiting for repairs for two weeks,” Rick said.
Now more than four months into the 11-month journey, the Wonthaggi doctor is in the thick of it.
His team, Visit Sanya, made good time across the Indian Ocean and have now caught up to the fleet.
Rick recalls stage four of the race.
“As we were so late to Fremantle, we started two days behind the rest of the fleet with Punta and UNICEF and we raced to Airlie Beach on elapsed time,” he said.
“The course was around Tassie then north. At the top of Tasmania, we were less than two days behind so were effectively in second place,” Rick said.
“What turned out to be a wrong route choice eventually left us becalmed off the Gold Coast after escaping calm conditions near Byron Bay.
“We ended up accepting last, then moored most of the way to Fraser Island, finally having good winds to sail the last bit to Whitsunday,” he said.
Now travelling along the east coast of Australia, Rick was looking forward to rejoining the fleet for the beginning of the fifth stage.
“Despite finishing last, we got points; one point for 11th, two points for the scoring gate and three points for winning the fastest across Bass Strait,” Rick said.
“We are fourth overall and looking forward to the race, starting this time with the whole fleet. Spirits are still high,” he said.
Whitehouse sails back into fourth