We are delighted to announce that for the third consecutive race, Healix has been appointed as the in-port medical assistance provider for the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.
From aches and pains to fractures and everything in between, our medical experts will be on hand at the 15 port stops over the next 11 months.
The Clipper race is one of the biggest challenges of the natural world and an endurance test like no other. Supplied with eleven identical 70-foot ocean rowing yachts, teams are challenged to sail over 40,000 nautical miles around the world in an eleven month long contest, divided over eight legs and fifteen races.
Normally the domain of seasoned pros, this supreme challenge is taken on by ordinary, everyday people with the dream to achieve something great – no previous sailing experience necessary. Entrants are required to complete a rigorous training programme prior to the race start so that they are prepared to take on the same challenges as a pro racer. Not only will they be sailing the yachts in treacherous conditions, they will also be responsible for its maintenance and repairs for the duration, pushing them to their physical limits. Entrants can choose to complete the full circumnavigation or select individual legs.
Almost 700 people from all walks of life are taking part in the 2019-20 edition of the race. Each team will be assigned fully qualified skipper and an additional qualified person to safely guide them. The average age of the applicants is 48, with the youngest being just 18 years old and the oldest being a great 76!
Our medical desk will be on hand throughout the race to provide medical assistance for any crew members taken ill or needing specialist treatment. We have set up a dedicated 24 hour helpline for the exclusive use of Clipper Race crew and will look after them when they are in port; organising medical appointments, arranging treatment and settling medical bills as soon as possible.We know how keen competitors will be to be able to continue their adventure, so we need to get them treated quickly so that they are fit to re-join their yacht before it departs on the next leg. We are geared up for everything from minor injuries to significant trauma. We will also organise repatriation of anyone who is not fit to continue.
The race of their lives
The race began on Sunday 1st September, starting from St Katharine Docks in London. After experiencing emotional goodbyes, the crews started out on the first leg of the circumnavigation, the Atlantic Trade Winds Leg – a 33-day marathon across the Atlantic to Uruguay, South America.
Routing towards the Canaries, the weather becomes warmer as the teams seek the Trade Winds to take them towards the Equator. The first key tactical decision the teams will face is whether to pass the Canaries to port, starboard or go through the middle of the islands. The surrounding mountains can create a wind shadow for several hundred miles – get it wrong and they will feel the frustration of snail pace sailing.
The Trade Winds will come as a great relief but up ahead another challenge awaits; the dreaded Doldrums with fickle wind holes and sudden squalls that will test their patience to the full. As they go from the Northern to the Southern Hemisphere, the breeze will return but there are counter currents to avoid before South America appears over the horizon.
From Uruguay, the teams will stop at Cape Town, Fremantle, the Whitsundays, Sanya, Zhuhai, Seattle and New York before blasting back towards the finish port in almost a years’ time.
For all ports along their journey, our Global Provider Network team have harnessed their wealth of experience to provide the Clipper Race with in-depth reports consisting of a location summary, a list of local medical centres of excellence, and a clear procedure that should be followed if a crew member needs medical assistance or advice.
If you’d like to keep track of their progress, the Clipper Race Viewer will be in operation for the whole race and will update the position of each yacht on the route once an hour.
We wish all the teams the best of luck in the competition, and in the nicest possible way we hope we do not have cause to meet them on their journey!