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Canadian Skipper Competing in World's Longest Ocean Race Clinches First Win in Global Series into Sydney, Australia

SYDNEY, December 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

Canadian skipper of Henri Lloyd, Eric Holden, crossed the finish line into Sydney, Australia at 0315 local time (UTC+11), his first race win and fourth consecutive podium result in the Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race.

     (Photo: )

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Holden and his amateur crew celebrated their win with Champagne in Rushcutter Bay which consolidates their overall lead of the 2013-14 Clipper Race series to date.

Arriving into Sydney, Eric said: "This win has been a long time coming; we've been the bridesmaid for the last couple of races so it's nice to do one better and win Race 5 in Sydney, Australia.

"People have been asking me if I would be happy winning the overall race without winning one. My answer is always yes, but it feels so much better to win a race then come second or third.

"What's been interesting about this race has been the mixture of offshore and inshore racing. With the interchangeable weather it meant a lot more sail changes and a lot more work for the crew. 

"Our strategy for this race was to take it more conservatively and when our chance came we were ready to push hard and make it count."

Holden was voted Sailor of the Month by Sail Canada for his winning performance in the Clipper Race last month in what is regarded as the toughest global endurance challenge.

The team used the 2150 mile race from Albany, Western Australia, via the Southern Ocean as further training ahead of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race the entire Clipper Race fleet will take part in on 26 December.

The race from Albany to Sydney followed a particularly brutal and dramatic Southern Ocean crossing. Early on in the race, two boats had to divert and medevac off injured crew after exceptionally strong wind speeds when gusts in excess of 90 miles per hour lashed the fleet, providing dramatic surfs and towering waves as it headed south through the Indian Ocean's Agulhas Current into the Roaring Forties of the Southern Ocean. Every two to three days, the yachts were hit by new low pressure systems which made for an epic and particularly challenging Leg.

The remainder of the fleet will arrive into the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia over the next two days.

The fleet's progress can be tracked through the Clipper Race Viewer at

Notes to Editors:

To download official team photos and video, which will be updated throughout arrivals, please visit:

Pictures by AAP, Free to use

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About Clipper Ventures Plc

Clipper Ventures Plc was established in 1995 by legendary yachtsman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first person to sail solo non-stop around the world in 1968-69. Sir Robin founded the company on the premise that sailing should be made available to everyone, regardless of age or experience. So he launched the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race in 1996. The company owns and operates its own matched fleet of ocean racing yachts and so far more than 3,000 people have competed in the eight editions of the Clipper Race to date. The company also owns the rights to the professional solo round the world VELUX 5 OCEANS race and runs a successful events division offering corporate sailing and development programmes. Today Clipper Ventures is recognised as a leading international marine events company which is focused on developing and promoting major global events such as the Clipper Race.

Clipper 13-14 Round the World Yacht Race

The Clipper 13-14 Round the World Yacht Race will start in summer 2013 and return almost a year later after completing the 40,000 miles route, making it the world's longest ocean race. The event was established by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston to give everyone, regardless of sailing experience, the opportunity to discover the exhilaration of ocean racing. 650 people representing more than 40 nations will compete in the Clipper 13-14 Race on twelve brand new 70-foot yachts designed by renowned naval architect Tony Castro. It's the largest race ever. Crew members can sign up for the whole circumnavigation or one or more of eight legs. The only qualification for the race is the minimum age of 18 (there is no upper age limit) plus a thirst for adventure. The overall race is divided into individual stages and points are accumulated in a Formula 1-style scoring system. The yacht with the highest total points at the finish wins the Clipper Trophy.

For interview requests and further press info, please contact:
Julia Wall-Clarke
[email protected]

SOURCE Clipper Ventures Plc

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