Page last updated at 14:38 GMT, Saturday, 8 August 2009 15:38 UK

First minister names racing yacht

Edinburgh Inspiring Capital
The yacht will set off from the Humber on 13 September

Hundreds of wellwishers have welcomed the arrival in Port of Leith of Scotland's entry in this year's Clipper Round The World Yacht Race.

First Minister Alex Salmond officially named the vessel Edinburgh Inspiring Capital.

The 68ft yacht will set off on the gruelling 35,000-mile race from the River Humber next month.

It is one of 10 stripped down racing yachts competing, each sponsored by an international city.

Mr Salmond said he was delighted to name the yacht and meet some of the young people taking part in the race.

"The crew of Edinburgh Inspiring Capital will take the Homecoming message to ports across the world and encourage visitors to come to Scotland long after the year's celebrations," he said.

The Clipper Race is a fantastic and unique opportunity for the city to be seen on a global scale over a prolonged period
Jenny Dawe
Leader, Edinburgh City Council

"I've no doubt that they will be tremendous ambassadors for Scotland as well as an inspiration to others who are striving to overcome personal challenges or to achieve their ambitions. "

Each yacht will have up to 18 crew members on board at one time plus a professional skipper to lead them in the challenge.

Edinburgh Inspiring Capital will have 44 people taking part in various legs of the journey including students, builders and the oldest crew member, 62-year-old management consultant Michael Boyle.

Seven unemployed people, chosen by Edinburgh City Council, will form part of a relay team on each of the seven legs of the journey.

Marketing campaign

The entry has been sponsored by various Scottish businesses and a year long campaign, led by Destination Edinburgh Marketing Alliance will use the voyage to promote the capital.

City council leader Jenny Dawe was on board as the yacht arrived at Port of Leith.

She said: "The Clipper Race is a fantastic and unique opportunity for the city to be seen on a global scale over a prolonged period.

"I am truly honoured to have been asked to join the crew onboard Edinburgh Inspiring Capital as she makes her maiden voyage into her home port."

During the race, the crew is expected to go through about 17 miles of toilet paper, 171,000 tea bags and will bake fresh bread each day.

On average, they will sleep for just two and a half hours at a time while competing.

The yacht will set off from the Humber in the north east of England on 13 September. The race is due to end on 17 July next year.

From next Thursday, Edinburgh Inspiring Capital will be open to the public for people to see for themselves the conditions on board.

Last year the crew of the Glasgow: Scotland with style, finished the race in third place.



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SEE ALSO
City enters yacht in world race
07 Jul 09 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
Sailor wins round-the-world race
06 Jul 08 |  South of Scotland
Sailor takes round-the-world lead
02 Jun 08 |  South of Scotland
Skipper soars in global challenge
14 Feb 08 |  South of Scotland

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