The Clipper Race generates a multi-million pound economic impact for its host ports and London benefits even further from the high profile start and finish with a race village at St Katharine Docks, next to the iconic Tower Bridge.
The London Mayor stated: “The Clipper Race fleet provides a spectacular sight on the Thames as hundreds of sailors set off on this amazing feat of human endurance. London is proud to host the race village at the historic St Katharine Docks in east London and the city welcomes the thousands of spectators who are expected to watch the launch and return of the race.
“This unique event will provide a great showcase for London and highlights its role as a great host for major sporting events. The first Leg of the Clipper Race is to Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and will reinforce our own Olympic legacy in the process. I look forward to welcoming all the yachts back safely at the end of the race in July 2016.”
Over a hundred thousand visitors were attracted during the Clipper 2013-14 Race and this is expected to grow for the 2015-16 series which arrives in London on Friday 21 August and will be hosted at St Katharine Docks until 30 August. The fleet returns 11 months later after its record breaking 40,000 nautical mile circumnavigation to twelve major markets on six continents.
St Katharine Docks benefits from the global showcase of the picturesque waterside community of offices, shops, bars and restaurants, in addition to the huge economic uplift for London hotels, hospitality and leisure businesses as thousands of visitors descend on the Clipper Race village.
William Bowman, St Katharine Docks Marina Director commented: “St Katharine Docks is the Official Race Start and Finish Port of the remarkable Clipper Round the World Yacht Race for the second consecutive time. Whether you are a sailing enthusiast or someone who is simply intrigued by courageous human spirit, this is a truly inspiring and unique event taking part in the heart of London that shouldn’t be missed.”
The Clipper Race operates a matched fleet of twelve 70-foot yachts which are branded by sponsors, partners and official suppliers and form the centrepiece of a global activation programme. The teams consist of amateur sailors led by professional skippers. The route takes in Brazil, South Africa, Australia, South East Asia, China, USA, Panama, Northern Ireland and the Netherlands.
Seattle was revealed as the latest Host Port to partner the Clipper Race, the first time it has been a stopover in the 19-year history of the race. It will be the starting point for the US coast-to-coast leg of the race to New York, via the Panama Canal.