Henri Lloyd GORE–TEX® Experience Tour winners take on the Clipper Race

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Selected from over 600 candidates to fulfil the adventure of a lifetime, the first of the Henri Lloyd GORE-TEX® Experience Tour winners arrived in Albany, Western Australia last week  after battling the 5,000 mile Southern Ocean ‘Sleigh Ride’ from Cape Town, South Africa.

Earlier this year the GORE- TEX® Experience Tour in conjunction with Henri Lloyd ran a competition to find three outdoor enthusiasts eager to participate in one of the world’s toughest endurance challenges - the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

Julie Cully, 37, who was chosen to compete in Leg 3 arrived in Albany, Western Australia last week on board Invest Africa. Julie, an Air Stewardess originally from Ireland, clocked up over 5,000 miles over the three and a half week race from Cape Town, South Africa, to Albany, Western Australia taking on the mighty power of the Southern Ocean.

After experiencing wind speeds of 100 knots plus in freezing conditions, Julie was eager to share her once in a lifetime experience:

“When the real weather kicked off, it was unbelievable – I have never, ever experienced seas like that before.

“At one point I was sitting on the high side of the boat and I was looking down as we were going over the top of a wave – I felt like I was on top of a mountain, the swell was massive it was simply unbelievable.”

Julie added, “The best part of the race for me was the people. My heart has been touched so much by my crew, the team work and all the new friends I have now.”

Julie will now hand the Henri Lloyd GORE-TEX® Experience Tour baton over to her fellow competition winner Grace Freret. Grace, 31, a nurse from Liverpool was chosen to compete in Leg 4 - the Australian Leg of the Clipper Race, clocking up over 4,000 miles from Albany to Sydney, before setting off to compete in the world renowned, Rolex Sydney Hobart Race.

Grace said ahead of Race 5 start tomorrow, “I am really excited to take on the Leg 4 of the Clipper Race challenge on behalf of the Henri Lloyd GORE- TEX® Experience Tour. I’ve loved hearing about Julie’s stories from the last race; I just can’t wait to get started now.”

The final chapter of the tour will be completed by Romanda Simpson, 32, who will compete in the 7,000 mile race from Brisbane to Singapore, before arriving in Qingdao, China to complete Leg 5 of the Clipper Race.

You can follow the progress of the GORE -TEX Experience Tour winners www.experience-tour.com/ or follow the winners' rogress on the GORE-TEX products Facebook page www.facebook.com/GORETEXeu?ref=ts&fref=ts  or follow @GORETEX_Outdoor on twitter.