Irish clipper yacht arrives in New York harbor

“It’s the most invigorating way to travel the world,” says Derry-­Londonderry skipper Sean McCarter.

Last weekend the Derry-­Londonderry clipper yacht sailed into New York’s North Marina Cove after a six day journey from Jamaica in The Caribbean.

The Irish Yacht is part of the year-­long Clipper 2013-­14 Round the World Yacht Race, the world’s longest ocean race. The race is made up of eight legs, which includes 16 individual races. The Clipper, which is sponsored by Derry­Londonderry-­Doire, set sail from St. Katherine’s Docks in London on Sept 1 2013 and has since traveled to Europe, South America, South Africa, Australia, Indonesia, The Caribbean, and The United States.

On board the Derry-­Londonderry clipper is a team of 20 crew, among them, 10 full-­time team members who will complete a full circumnavigation and the rest are known as “leggers”. They join for one or more of the eight legs of the race. The crew of 20 amateur sailors is guided by professional skipper Sean McCarter, from Derry city.

The Irishman who spoke at the New York Yacht Club on Thursday said “it has been an honor to represent Derry­Londonderry around the world” and “it’s such a great opportunity to be able to promote the city where I grew up and love so much”.

Derry­-Londonderry was named the fourth best city to visit in the world in 2013 by Lonely Planet.

McCarter describes the journey as a “testament to human endurance” and although hitting a few bumps on the way, including a man over­board incident, he says the main highlight of the trip was when the Irish Yacht won the Sydney Hobart, an iconic off­shore race in Australia. He explains that they managed to clip in front of Sir Robin Knox-­Johnston, the founder and chairman of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race and proudly take the position of first place.

The Irish Clipper makes it final leg of the journey back across the Atlantic Ocean today with its first stop in Derry­Londonderry. McCarter says he looks forward to arriving back in his hometown before making the final journey to the Netherlands and then finishing in London completing a full circumnavigation of the globe.

We wish the team a safe journey back home.