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Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race 18 August 2006 - Morning Press Release

18 August, 2006 10:12:00 AM BST | Racetime 10:16:12:00

A delighted crew onboard Sir Geoffrey Mulcahy's Swan 56, Noonmark VI, crossed the finish line off Cowes last night to complete the Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race with a time of 10 days, 5 hours and 31 minutes and finishing fifth on the water. It had been a hard last few miles for the crew as the wind dropped below 10 knots for much of the final 300 miles and along with battling the fierce tidal gates along the South Coast of Britain, it made for a tactically tricky end to the race.

However, spirits were high onboard as crewmember Steve commented: "I have been privileged to sail with some of the most professional and committed guys I have ever come across, their complete focus and determination have given them a just result. As with every long race there have been a number of highs and lows (no pun intended!) one of the lows must be the 800 mile close reach with grey skies, grey seas, and the lack of land sightings. One of the greatest high must be the 20 knot downwind rush just after Muckle Flugga, then leaving our bowman alone for a few minutes at the wheel to find him careering along at 18 Knots hollering 'Yahoo, more more'!"

Meanwhile at the northern tip of the Shetland Isles the crew of Kieran Jamesons Sigma 38, Changeling, were in a celebratory mood and cracked open a bottle of champagne as they rounded the mystical turning point of Muckle Flugga at 0625 hrs this morning. Kieran sent a text this morning describing the experience saying: "What a sail! All upwind and weve already logged 1537 miles beating up to this point and guess what? The wind is now from the south and it looks like a beat down the North Sea, 710 miles back to Cowes! The crew are all in great spirits and the morale is high so Id better go now and join them for a glass of champers!"

Closer to home, the young RYA backed crew of Unlimited Sailing/John Merricks should be the next to finish with just 68 miles to go and if they can keep their speed up throughout today should be on track to finish in the early evening. The winds are expected to fill this afternoon with rain clouds bringing breeze along the South Coast which will also greatly benefit Volker Linzer's Andrews 56, Norddeutsche Vermoegen that is just behind the John Merricks crew with 92 miles left to run.

As the race comes to its conclusion the RORC will continue to bring daily updates and position reports from the boats highlighting the highs and lows of this premier coastal yacht race. All yachts competing in the Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race have been fitted with a tracking device developed by the RORC in conjunction with OC Technology. Yacht positions will be updated hourly and can be followed on the Royal Ocean Racing Clubs dedicated micro site accessed via www.rorc.org

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