Organisers of the Clipper Round the World Race today praised the contributions of the staff and volunteers around the Abell Point Marina during their stay here.
Having arrived last weekend, those providing assistance wound up working a little bit longer than expected but they took it in their stride and were able to put on a good show which impressed organisers.
At the departure, Jonathan Levy, Global Business and Communications Director of the Race was full of praise for the effort that went in to making this a special event.
“Excellent support from the people, officially the people who work for the Marina but also all of the people who have volunteered as well so there’s been a real community spirit, a can do spirit,” he says.
“When we come in with 12 big boats there’s a lot of maintenance, a lot of asks and they have come back every time with everything we need, it’s been faultless.”
The volunteers primarily consisted of members of the local yacht club who were around all week doing anything that was asked of them, from helping the crew to putting out buoys for the start and finish of the race.
While no guarantees were offered as to whether or not the race would return to the Whitsundays in two years’ time, the fact this week has gone so smoothly has enhanced those chances.
The fleet set sail for Da Nang in Vietnam with a vocal crowd, boosted by visitors from P&O’s Pacific Dawn, waving them off with flags and leaving a decent sized gap in the harbour which Mr Levy likened to a Christmas tree without the decorations.
This leg of the race will be the halfway point for the boats as they begin to trek back towards London for the run home.
Organisers of the race will depart tomorrow however many have said they are eager to come back on holidays as soon as possible.