In this week’s Future Crew Friday we catch up with round the world crew member, Jimmy Gannon from New South Wales, Australia.
Jimmy first heard about the race on his way home from work at North Sydney Train Station when he saw a race billboard "sail around the world, no experience required" and admits he was sold on the idea before he got on the train.
Find out how Jimmy’s race experience has been so far, recently completing Level 2 of the four levels of compulsory training at our Australian training centre.
Name: James Gannon
Signed up for: Clipper 2015-16 Race, Round the world
What was it that made you sign up for the Clipper Race?
I felt like I was stuck in a bit of a rut with work and life in general and that I needed something to pull me out of my mundane and repetitive lifestyle. I figured sailing around the world would be the perfect way to bring some excitement back in to my life, and would be a great chance make new friends and learn new skills in the process.
Why did you decide to do the full circumnavigation?
I spoke with people who had done the Clipper Race in the past and most of them said that they wished they had done more legs or the whole circumnavigation. I know that if I did just one or two legs, then I would regret not doing the whole race. I don't know if I'll ever have this opportunity again, so in my mind it was now or never, everything or nothing.
What has been the highlight of your Clipper Race experience so far?
My Clipper Race experience has been awesome. I'm enjoying everything much more than I expected. Flying spinnakers has been the highlight for me so far, including competing in a twilight spinnaker race around Sydney Harbour. It's also really satisfying when you've just spent an hour working to get the boat travelling as fast as it can, to get the chance to sit down with the other crew members and enjoy the feeling of the boat cutting through the waves as you watch a pod of dolphins swimming alongside.
What have you found the most challenging so far?
Seasickness. Even being cold, wet, hungry and tired are all easy to deal with when compared to being seasick. I had mother duty on the first day out and had to make lunch for the crew. For me, dealing with seasickness is hard enough at the best of times, but cooking for twelve hungry people in a hot, stuffy galley that's rolling in every direction was nearly impossible!
What advice would you give to someone preparing for their Level 1 training?
My advice is to try to understand what you've got yourself into. Talk to people who have done previous races and training, read their blogs and watch the videos of the race online. The better you can prepare yourself, the better you'll be able to handle long, cold nights, eating all your meals from a bowl, sleeping in a damp bed and being thrown around like a rag doll in rough weather.
What do your family and friends think about you doing the race?
At first my family and friends thought I was crazy and I'm pretty sure some of them still do. But they are all very excited for me and are always asking to hear how my training is going.
The 2015-16 race starts August 30 and is now more than 85 per cent full. To find out how you can join our intrepid group of adventurers, click here.Join The Race