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The Clipper Yachts Return to Liverpool

Photographs  John H. Luxton 2008

The Clipper Ventures plc Clipper 2007-08 Round The World Yacht Race concluded at Liverpool on Saturday July 05, 2008. The final stage of the race - The "Liverpool 08 Dash" began at 10:30 from Crosby Lightfloat. The yachts were accompanied inbound by HMS GRIMSBY at the conclusion of the 35,000 mile circumnavigation and were met at Crosby by the Mersey Ferries ROYAL IRIS OF THE MERSEY which operated a special cruise which only cost 15 for three hours. This cruise offered the best view of the event and several other interesting shipping movements - that of THV GALATEA and the arrival of RFA GOLD ROVER. Also berthed at the Cruise Terminal Stage and adding to the interest on the river was the cruise ship GRAND PRINCESS.

The overall race winner was the NEW YORK CLIPPER, sponsored by the city of New York. In second place was HULL & HUMBERSIDE CLIPPER. Hull will host the 2009 / 10 Clipper Race, though apparently Liverpool will be bidding to host future races.

From an observers point of view the arrival of the third race to conclude on Merseyside was a much more low key affair than that of the first race with lower numbers of spectators and fewer small craft in evidence. However, the variable weather which varied from cold and over cast through heavy rain to warm sunshine all within three hours would not have helped neither would the inaccessibility of the Pier Head due to the various construction projects all designed to present Liverpool with an unattractive face during Capital of Culture Year!

After conclusion of the "Liverpool 08" dash up the river the yachts assembled off Brunswick Dock before proceeding one at a time into the Canning Basin. Each yacht's arrival being greeted by an artillery salute.

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