It seems like I've been neglecting all sorts of social media and the website recently. I can only apologise for this lacking in updates and interactions. Of course I'd always welcome more input from you to fine-tune the type and frequency of posts that you come across!
The really big news comes in the form of the #vendee2020vision project/program from Whitecap Ltd. It's the stepping stone that all of the young offshore sailors have been waiting for after the Artemis Offshore Academy started. Whitecap is offering 10 sailors the opportunity to develop skills directly related to getting to the Vendée Globe! This includes sailing/technical skills aboard Artemis Ocean Racing's IMOCA 60 and commercial skills with two new employees at Whitecap (not me...). I must confess to being very very fortunate in getting one of these invitations!
Follow the progress on all social media channels (links below) as well as Whitecap's:
Work has been amazing! I've probably mentioned that I've started working 9-5 aboard an IMOCA60 which is fantastic enough. Then getting told about #vendee2020vision was the icing on the cake! For an engineer and someone who loves sailing, getting to learn the systems and methods aboard whilst also spending every day on or in the water is definitely something that ticks the boxes.
Another side of the job is learning about social media and all of the nuances. It's a massive topic and people can dedicate their lives to studying data, trends and statistics so I'm taking to looking at the basics and trying to apply similar methods to sailing to it. There will no doubt be a LinkedIn post going out soon about the journey (there's already been an update if you've noticed) which I encourage people to read. Of course, if you have any suggestions, don't be afraid to drop me a line.
In other news...
The first holiday that included lazing around on a beach for a while! Alicante was the destination picked for its accommodating amigos and general warmth... Although we did have a couple of days of rain. One of the highlights was visiting the Volvo Ocean Race Museum which more than made up for it's small size with spectacular content designed for the avid sailor to the toe dippers! There was also the fair share of beaches and walking which one must do to burn off all the calories of the Spanish sobrasada. Of course, there were many a beverage drunk and sun caught but it was a thoroughly enjoyable time to relax then engage for this upcoming season!
Physio Corner – Road to IM
Slightly old news but... I'm all cleared for sports and to not return to Drs/Physios/Rehab! It's fantastic news though after what ended up being a very rapid recovery. No doubt the careful eye of Prof, Jon and Mery made the entire process within safe bounds. Never the less, things still have to be very careful and not overdone as the Patella tendonitis is still playing up slightly particularly after being static for periods of time in cool temperatures.
A small shout out though to Spire Southampton who have agreed to let me train at their facilities in Southampton! It is making a world of difference having access to state of the art facilities, more on that next week (check Facebook and LinkedIn)
As for the recovery itself, I've progressed to lifting weights again, mainly large compound manoeuvres looking to recreate the conditions experienced when aboard. I'm still struggling to copy the grinder but there'll be many opportunities on the many days out on the water this year to get fitter on that!
Dream race calendar?
Again, as no insane races have appeared in my newsfeeds (feel free to signpost them!) I'll update you on the Vendée and this time, my progress:
So far we've gone from hull to mast and soon will have all the sails aboard A2. It's no mean feat getting it all on and it takes a day to do put the rig in. Still, there are many more things on the maintenance to do list before she goes sailing. Two things that really jumped out was the hydraulic system (as I haven't played with that kind of thing before) and the pedestal + button system.