Cape Town - The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race has announced that Dale Smyth is set to join its Race Office team after being appointed Deputy Race Director.
Smyth, who gained extensive first-hand experience of the Clipper Race as Skipper of the Dare to Lead team in the most recent edition, is regarded as one of South Africa's most respected offshore sailors after racing and instructing there for over 20 years.
He takes over from outgoing Tom Way who recently decided to leave the Clipper Race after seven years' with the organisation.
On his new appointment, Smyth said as quoted by their website: "I'm very much looking forward to starting this exciting new professional chapter as Deputy Race Director of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.
"I have a huge passion for sailing and have dedicated my career to enabling others to experience the pure joy and freedom of offshore racing. The Clipper Race is the only event of its kind which trains amateur sailors to sail around the world and whilst I was proud enough to Skipper a team in this amazing challenge, to directly assist in the success of eleven teams and hundreds of crew taking on this test will be an unbelievably proud achievement."
Smyth says his love for sailing started aged eight after reading one of Sir Robin Knox-Johnston's books, and he decided to turn his passion into a career.
During his time in South Africa, Smyth also held the role of Sailing Manager of False Bay Yacht Club, Cape Town where he was part of a team that created and ran one of the biggest offshore events in the country, the 200nm Mossel Bay Race, which along with his experience of being a Skipper in the most recent Clipper Race, made him a fitting candidate for the Deputy Race Director role.
Aspects of Smyth's role as Deputy Race Director will include managing the allocation of crew to their teams, recruiting and managing the next group of race Skippers, assisting the Race Director on the overall planning of the next race route, as well as the operational delivery of the Clipper 2019/20 Race and beyond. And with over 500 crew already signed up to this next edition, this process is already well underway.
Smyth and his family are now in the process of relocating to the UK from South Africa, with his role officially starting on November 26.