You might start as a sailing novice but by the end of eleven months at sea you will have 40,000 racing miles in your log book. You will have sailed in all conditions from warm trade winds, through winter storms and the tropical heat of the Doldrums, crossing the Equator twice.
You will have been becalmed, battled through 65-knot gales, struggled through squalls of stinging rain, snow flurries, sleet and fog. You will have experienced the emotions of untying your lines and saying goodbye to loved ones as you head to the drama of your first race start in front of the world’s media and tens of thousands of spectators.
You will have learnt to live life on a permanent angle, cooked meals to keep up morale when the going got tough, seen wildlife that few are privileged to see, sailed under a canopy of stars that took your breath away and watched dawns and sunsets that revealed the planet at its most beautiful.
You will have visited 13 different countries and been welcomed ashore with all the fervour deserved for long distance sporting champions. You will have celebrated at prize givings, shaken hands with the great and good, made friendships that will last a lifetime and discovered things about yourself that you never thought possible.
You will be fitter, healthier and more alive than you dared to believe. You will have joined an elite club and, as you return to the point of departure and cross your outward track in the world’s longest yacht race, you’ll head home with a set of experiences that will live with you forever. You have just become a circumnavigator.