22 April: Calling all women! Join us at the Women’s Expo, Bristol

17 April 2017

This week on Saturday 22 April, the Women’s Expo (WAExpo) in Bristol is taking to the water to talk all things adventure.

The first travel and adventure exposition in the UK dedicated to women, the WAExpo believes in making adventure accessible and inclusive to all women - and so do we! With females making up a third of our race crew, we’re encouraging more women to be inspired and cross the world’s oceans for the adventure of a lifetime on board our Clipper Race fleet.

Running from 1000 to 1730 at the historic harbourside M Shed in Bristol, visit us at the WAExpo to hear from the UK’s leading female adventurers, including our very own intrepid female crew, Recruitment Manager, and circumnavigator, Della Parsons, who will share her race experience at 1125.

Working in production for the BBC in Hull, Della decided to swap her desk and went from sailor to circumnavigator in 18 months when she took part in the Clipper 2009-10 Race. After completing her first circumnavigation, she put her BBC TV background to good use by becoming part of the documentary team for the 2011-12 race edition. Della now works for the Clipper Race, inspiring others to step outside their comfort zone and achieve something remarkable.

Ahead of her talk at the WAExpo, self-confessed adrenaline junkie Della says: “More and more people are looking for something different these days, something extraordinary that will really push their limits and test the boundaries of what they thought they were capable of.

“The Clipper Race was a hugely challenging, positive and inspiring experience for me. It was a learning curve that changed my life, and I hope to encourage more women to do the same and push their boundaries through ocean racing.”

Like Della, our female crew are made up of women from all walks of life, from housewives to students, CEOs to teachers. From age 18 upwards, they represent a mix of nationalities and previous sailing experience, but all have one thing in common - a thirst for adventure. Whether they choose to take on the whole circumnavigation or compete in one or more of eight individual legs of the race, all must complete the Clipper Race’s comprehensive training programme.

“I had some truly once-in-a-lifetime experiences on board the Clipper Race and the sense of accomplishment is huge," says 2015-16 race circumnavigator Ellie Fearon.

“From the first day of training on the race, there were no particular expectations of me based on my gender or age. We were crew and what we offered our teams was based on our experience and more-importantly, our attitude," explains Ellie, who describes herself as a ‘worrier’ and had no previous sailing experience before signing up for the race.

After a brief stint back at work following her race adventure Ellie found it impossible to sit at a desk and now the 34 year old former Engineer has changed careers, now currently training as a physics teacher. She adds: ”I am looking forward to sharing my story at the WAExpo and hope that women will see that if I can take on this challenge, they are more than capable of achieving their own adventure goals!"

Tickets to the WAExpo are £35 and the Women's Expo organisers have kindly gifted Clipper Race fans with a code for 10% off the ticket price. To get yours and discover your inner adventurer, click here.

Want to experience the thrill of ocean racing? The Clipper 2017-18 Race is currently 90 per cent full with limited availability and we are also now recruiting for the 2019-20 edition. If you would like to take part in the race, apply here.

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