First Clipper crew briefing!

On Saturday my sailing adventure starter with the first Clipper Crew briefing at the London Boat Show. I was very nervous about the prospect of meeting so many fellow crew mates and new faces but I felt very excited too. The afternoon kicked off with a brilliant speech by the founder of the Clipper Race, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston. He told the 17-18 crew that we were all people who wanted to “paint our lives in bright colours, not in pastel shades”. I thought this was a great way of summing up why I am doing the Clipper Race. I don’t want to be defined by the job I do, or my age or gender, I want to be defined by my passion for life, by doing something completely different and thinking and living well and truly outside the box. According to Sir Robin more people have climbed Mount Everest than have sailed around the world. Wow. It started to really hit home what a massive thing I am going to be doing, embarking on the Clipper Race!

 

The room was absolutely buzzing with excitement. You could really feel it and looking at people’s faces (mine included I’m sure!) the adventure really was beginning here. There were some brilliant talks by various people in the Clipper team including the race director who took us through the race rules, and the head of training who took us through some of things we need to do to prepare for our epic adventure – work on our fitness and particularly on our balance which should help us to avoid the dreaded sea sickness! There was a talk by the communications director who urged us all to work together to build a worldwide media following. Finally there was a talk by the new crew supporter’s co-ordinator who will be looking after our friends and family (phew!). As I had my mum with me I was very pleased to be able to link up with someone who will help me to look after her while I’m away!

 

A few of the race partners were there too. We were given our first official kit – a Henri Lloyd jacket which was a highlight, along with a very important notebook (I love stationery) to jot things down. So much to learn and so much to remember but I felt like a celebrity with ‘official crew’ stamped on my back. Speaking to Unicef and understanding how involved they are was great as well. Elliot Brown were showcasing their very smart 17/18 Clipper edition watch. We had our official Clipper pictures taken and despite realising afterwards that I had chocolate around my mouth, that was brilliant too! The event ended with a drinks reception hosted by the sponsor Stormhoek wine – no better way to end a very exciting day! I’m feeling inspired and raring to go. Bring it on!