Clipper race crews will be lining up at 0500 tomorrow for the start of the Round the Island Race 22/6/07

Clipper Race crews who’ll be lining up for the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race later in the year will be getting in some practice tomorrow when they head off in the 1,800-yacht fleet Round the Island Race. The 12-strong fleet will start at 0500 tomorrow morning – the first time the fleet of matched 68ft race yachts has ever taken part in this annual race.

The Clipper Fleet, along with three of the marine events company’s Clipper 60s, will be racing alongside Clipper Race Chairman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston on his Open 60 Lombard Marine Finance. Sir Robin has recently completed the Velux 5-Oceans round the world race and will oversee the sixth Clipper Round the World Race when the 200 non-professional crews head off from Liverpool in September.

Sir Robin said: “It’s great that our fleet of Clipper 68s will be taking part in the Round the Island race for the first time this year. It will provide the crews with some great racing practice ahead of the Clipper 07-08 Round the World Yacht Race that starts later this year.”