HAMPSHIRE sailors competing in the world’s longest yachting race are today back in the Atlantic as they line up to start the latest race to the Caribbean.

The 12-strong fleet taking part in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race has now left the Pacific behind as the 40,000-mile, year-long race reaches its final two months.

Having spent the past three days transiting through the Panama Canal the yachts are set to form up today before the starting line for the next race.

Race 12 will see them sailing through searingly hot conditions on a 500-mile sprint to the tropical island of Jamaica.

The teams, who have now sailed three quarters of the way around the earth, include 11 sailors from Hampshire, who are going the whole hog.

They are set to arrive on the island on Friday, where they will rest for eight days before heading north to New York. Organised by Gosport-based Clipper ventures the yachts are crewed by novices but skippered by professionals.