Meet Clipper 2017-18 Race Skipper Lance Shepherd

22 March 2017

Lance Shepherd began sailing on Lake Windermere at the age of 14 with his local Scout group and has never looked back.

For Lance, who has followed the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race since it began in 1996, selection as one of the events Skippers is the realisation of a lifetime goal, as he explains: “The challenge of taking a group of novice sailors, from all walks of life, out of their comfort zones and turning them into a successful round the world ocean racing team will be the highlight of my life, not just my career.”

After spending eleven years as a Commando in the Royal Marines, Lance began working as a freelance Skipper and has since gained extensive experience in ocean crossings, deliveries, team building, leadership, and also teaching the RYA syllabus.

“I believe a team is made by the complete engagement of every member which is achieved through building mutual respect, encouragement and collaboration.

“I have a very high standard of safe seamanship and will promote a safe culture of continuous improvement for the whole team as they take on one of the toughest challenges in the world.”

As an avid yacht racer, Lance competes most weeks and when he isn’t racing, you can find him on a committee boat as Match Official. Lance is a familiar face on the Round the Island Race start line, placing 29th overall on a Farr 65 during the last edition. Lance has also competed in the 2013 Fastnet Race and 2010 ARC where he co-Skippered a Discovery 55.

He adds: “I am looking forward to working with my crew, building them into a successful race team and watching them grow together to share lasting memories and friendships.”

In addition to his sailing qualifications, Lance holds a Part 4 Commercial Diver certificate, BSAC Sport Diver and BCU Advanced Canoe Instructor qualifications.

Five things about Lance:

My life motto is: Work hard, play hard.

My favourite word is: Blimey!

My greatest achievement is: 30 years of marriage and my three amazing children.

If I could take three luxuries with me during the Clipper Race, they would be: Custard Creams, a chef to cook great Chinese food, and a chip pan.

My longest period at sea was: Six months as part of a Royal Marine detachment on HMS Guardian in the South Atlantic.

We are introducing one of our twelve Clipper Race Skippers every day. Look out for Wendy Tuck's profile tomorrow to discover more about her second consecutive Clipper Race, her superpower of choice and her all-time favourite song.

To read more about our twelve Clipper 2017-18 Skippers, click here.

Want to race the world’s oceans? There are limited berths on board the Clipper 2017-18 Race due to start this August. To secure your place, apply here.

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