It was the 11th day for the Clipper Race fleet on the Race 7: The Forever Tropical Paradise Race to Sanya, China. Passing through the doldrums, the race fleets entered the Northeast trade wind belt and the leading ones seized the opportunity to speed up.
The two leading teams were "Qingdao" and "Dare to Lead". Both fleets were having intense competition as the distance between them was only about two nautical miles.
"Our long-awaited northeast trade wind has finally arrived. We take the spinnaker out and raise it up. Now, we are moving forward to Sanya in high speed. In the next 300-nautical mile-competition, we will pass through a number of islands, reefs and shoals since they appear on our route to the next marker," said Chris Kobusch, captain of the "Qingdao" fleet.
Next to the two leading teams was "Sanya Serenity Coast", which was 26 nautical miles behind the leading team. "We move forward in the right direction, but the weather is hot and wet. We keep a close eye on the wind condition. The depression will bring about squall winds that are bound to cause us big trouble. So we must beware the squall wind coming again," said Wendy Tuck, captain of "Sanya Serenity Coast".
The two teams with the most significant improvement in ranking were "UNICEF" (4th place) and "Liverpool 2018" (5th place). They chose a northward routine making them rise respectively from the 8th to the 4th and from the 9th to the 5th respectively.
Due to lack of luck in the competition, the "Visit Seattle" and the "Garmin" on the westward routine respectively ranked 6th and 7th.
Following them were the "NASDAQ" fleet ranking 8th, the "HotelPlanner.com" ranking 9th and the "Great Britain" ranking 10th.
All the fleets sail on a stable trade-wind zone. However, there is still a chance of squall wind. The fleets should concentrate on it and prepare well to respond the squall wind.
The destination of the competition is China's Sanya. All the fleets are expected to arrive in Sanya around February 21 to 25 and are scheduled to arrive in Qingdao during March 13 to 16.