'Tis a beautiful land this dear isle of song

17 March, 2010

Courtesy of: World Wide Images Limited

California has two of the Cork team on board for this race and Gavin Kelly and Noreen Osborne are ensuring there is a party spirit amongst their crew; 'Corkifornia' as they have been dubbed The St. Patrick’s Day festivities have been great on board today with our two Irish crew members renaming each of us with an Irish name, decorating the boat (more like covering it with green shamrocks) and generally causing mayhem but all good fun and just what the doctor ordered and a little light relief for the crew before some hard racing ahead. Happy St Patrick’s Day!”

Mike Lewis is one of Cork’s round the world crew members sailing on Edinburgh Inspiring Capital while the team waits to come together again in Panama to take delivery of their new vessel, details of which were announced this week.

Courtesy of: World Wide Images Limited

Mike says, “Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day on the Pacific Ocean, about 1,000 nautical miles from the nearest land, has to be one of the more unusual things I’ve done thus far. But distance from home cannot stand in the way of marking this most Irish of days, so I’ve attempted to bring some Irish ‘craic’ onto Edinburgh Inspiring Capital.

“With some goodies sent from home and from our sponsors, Fáilte Ireland, Cork City Council and Cork County Council, Edinburgh Inspiring Capital has been turned into an Irish boat for the day. The Irish flag flew proudly from the backstay this morning until the 30 knot winds threatened to shred it and it was forced to retire below. There have been Irish tattoos, big Irish hats and wigs, and Irish chocolate being appreciated by the crew here.

“It has also been a day of learning – the opportunity for the crew here to learn ‘cupla focail’ cannot be missed. So far, ‘cead mile failte’ has been successfully mastered. ‘Shona la feile Padraig’ was relatively easy for most. ‘Go raibh maith agut’ is being called a little cumbersome next to a simple ‘thank you’, and there are similar feelings about ‘mas e do thoil e’! But it’s a definite ten out of ten for effort over here!”

Courtesy of: World Wide Images Limited

Acting skipper of Spirit of Australia, Bob Bell, reports, “a visit by the leprechauns today to celebrate St. Patrick's Day!” Corkonian Sarah Boyle is currently racing with the Australian team and doing her bit to spread some Irish ‘craic’ through the fleet.

Orla Mellett, one of the round the world crew members from Cork is temporarily racing with the Cape Breton Island team following the grounding of Cork in the Java Sea in January.

Courtesy of: World Wide Images Limited

Orla, from Galway, said, “We have managed to pull out some Irish bits and pieces – hats, flags and shamrocks - so given that we’re not on our own yacht we have decided to bring Ireland to Cape Breton. We’re lucky that Cape Breton Island has strong Celtic links as well so they’re not unaccustomed to the way we like to celebrate things at home!”

Follow the race: http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com/index.php/Home