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Yorkshire represented in World Yacht Race

Yorkshire Clipper

3:45pm 7th July 2011

Yorkshire is taking on the world this summer when it competes in the Clipper 2011-12 Round the World Yacht Race as England’s only entrant.

The new 68ft yacht, Welcome to Yorkshire, will be on a global marketing mission to raise the profile of the county on its eight-leg, 40,000 mile world tour. The project will build on the impact of its predecessor Hull & Humber which took part in the last two Clipper Races.

In its bright pink livery the hard-to-miss yacht is sure to attract a lot of attention on its way around the world, and with a third of the crew from the county, the welcome in every port is sure to be a warm one.

Yorkshire’s involvement was unveiled at the historic seaside town of Whitby, home to one of the world’s greatest explorers, Captain James Cook. Eleven members of crew and representatives from Clipper Ventures joined Welcome to Yorkshire onboard the replica of Cook’s boat the Bark Endeavour to launch Yorkshire’s participation [pictured].

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said:

“Yorkshire is a world class destination and deserves to be seen on a global stage. The Clipper Race is the perfect event to showcase Yorkshire in key global markets, this is the third edition running that Yorkshire has competed in the Clipper Race, we are building on the success of those endeavours and hope to make this race our most successful to date.”

Evaluation by Yorkshire Forward showed the impact of Hull & Humber’s involvement helped raise the regional profile, aid inward investment, change local perceptions and increase tourism and educational opportunities securing £5m of trade deals and value during Clipper 09-10 alone. Clipper Ventures evaluated the media coverage for Hull & Humber in the two races in excess of US$17.2m and a cumulative global audience in excess of almost 320 million people saw the boat.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, legendary yachtsman and founder of Clipper Ventures, said:

“I am very happy to say, ‘Welcome to Yorkshire’ for the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race. This is the third race in which the county has been represented and it has always been a strong contender, both in the race and in ports of call where Welcome to Yorkshire has already shown itself to be an organisation that comes up with inspiring and effective ways to promote tourism and giving a warm Yorkshire welcome around the world.”

With nine out of the ten yachts announced to date for Clipper 11-12 Race Welcome to Yorkshire remains the only English entry. It will be competing against boats including De Lage Landen, Singapore, Visit Finland, Qingdao, Derry-Londonderry, Gold Coast Australia, Geraldton Western Australia and Edinburgh Inspiring Capital. The final yacht in the ten-strong line up will be announced next week.

The race starts from Southampton on Sunday 31st July 2011 with the first leg taking the crew to Rio de Janeiro via Madeira.

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