I really can’t describe the send off from London. There is a tube video for those who are interested. It seemed like the whole of London came down to St Kats to wave us off. After the emotion of the departure, saying goodbye to family and friends and some lovely surprise send-offs, the start of this journey around the world was here.
From the start Damian had a slightly different strategy from the rest of the fleet, as the rest wrestled with flying spinnakers for the first time over the start line we played it safe with a poled-out yankee. There was a certain familiarity about the race as we have been across the channel a number of times through the training. Its nice to finally land in France rather than see the coastline and then turn back for the UK. The weather was similar to previous crossings, settling us into life at a 45 degree angle. The time on the rail provided the opportunity to get to know who I would be sharing some, if not all this journey, with. I know it sounds cliché but they really are the best bunch of people and everyone has a story about why they are doing this race. Bonds are beginning to be made and I’m sure some will remain for years to come.
A frustrating time for about 24 hours as we hovered around the channel with no wind. Once moving we then were hit by a field of fog. With boats in close quarters, the race was called early to avoid any unnecessary collision and as we appeared out the fog we realised how close we were to Qingdao in the early hours. A satisfying finish for us for the first race – 4th place.