High Commissioner to the United Kingdom (UK), His Excellency Anthony Johnson, and his wife, Pamela, were special guests at a, welcome event for the crew of the Jamaica Lightning Bolt yacht, when the crew arrived back in Hull, England, at the end of the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race, on July 17.
The return marked the end of a 10-month, 35,000-mile race against nine other yachts. Jamaica Lightning Bolt claimed fifth place in the final line-up, sharing equal points with the fourth-placed Hull & Humber, but narrowly beaten due to the number of legs won during the race.
Jamaica’s High Commissioner to the UK, His Excellency Anthony Johnson (left), joins Skipper Pete Stirling and Regional Director of Tourism, Elizabeth Fox, on board Jamaica Lightning Bolt
High Commissioner Johnson, who congratulated the crew, said the reception for Jamaica Lightning Bolt was tremendous. He said he hoped there would be an opportunity for Jamaica to again be a part of the international race and that a Jamaican would be a part of the crew.
Jamaica Lightning Bolt was sponsored by the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) and named in honour of the world’s fastest man, Usain Bolt. Mr. Bolt, after winning the 100 metres in Paris on July 16, sent a message of congratulations to the crew members.
“Great work by Jamaica Lightning Bolt for making it to the finish line;
High Commissioner to the UK, His Excellency Anthony Johnson (right), and his wife. Pamela, join Clipper round-the-world race founder, Sir Robin Knox- Johnston, the first person to sail solo non-stop around the globe.
10 months and 35,000 miles – that’s some very long and enduring race. By my checks, you’d be pushing 40 seconds for the 100 metres at that pace, but I’m sure that’s faster than I could swim. It’s been an absolute honour to have my name attached to such a great team,” the message said.
High Commissioner Johnson was pleased with the positive feedback Port Antonio received from the crew of Jamaica Lightning Bolt and the rest of the Clipper boats, after the stop in Jamaica at the end of leg six of the race, in May 2010.
Crew members from all the yachts said the island had provided one of the most enjoyable stops and warmest welcomes of all the world ports on the route. They also praised the reception and activities organised by the JTB.
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the founder of the race and the first person to sail solo, non-stop around the world, thanked the JTB for its support in sponsoring the race.
At a prize-giving ceremony on July 17, all crew members were congratulated on their achievements and praised for the positive messages of Jamaica they spread on their stops around the world.
The crew was made up of over 40 persons of all ages and occupations. Some had no previous sailing experience before undertaking the round-the-world challenge. While some members were on board for 10 months, others just joined for particular legs of the journey.