Before setting sail from Liverpool on August 20, 2017, Clipper 2017-18 Race round the world crew member Roseann McGlinchey’s total sailing experience only consisted of three levels of Clipper Race training. Seven months and over 20,000 nautical miles later, it’s fair to say a lot has changed.
Since the Clipper 2017-18 Race began on August 20, 2017 in Liverpool, Roseann and her HotelPlanner.com team have crossed three oceans and taken part in seven races, the highlight being a win in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race Clipper 70 Class, which doubled as Race 5. But still the 24-year-old, who is from Lifford, Ireland, and studied in Derry-Londonderry, has trouble believing what she has already accomplished at the half way point of the race.
“It hasn’t sunk in on how far we’ve sailed!” says Roseann.
“Some days it feels like we haven’t even left Liverpool. How did I make it half way round the world from not even being able to sail before?
“At the start, I was quite nervous moving around the boat, and getting used to everything and learning where everything was and the process was quite difficult to understand. But the more we’ve done it, the more we’ve improved and my Skipper, Conall Morrison, has been great explaining and coaching us through everything. So, I feel my skills have definitely developed.”
Roseann’s skills have developed to the point that she is now one of the Watch Leaders on board HotelPlanner.com, a position she has found really rewarding.
She explains: “It’s been really nice to be so young and being able to lead teams. It was something I had never done before the Clipper Race. I think we did a really good job this race teaching the new crew, helping them learn to be just as good as the round the worlders. They were all really confident by the end and could do everything that we could which was really nice to see.”
Another sign of how far Roseann has come since she first began her Clipper Race journey is her reaction to the Southerly Busters that hit the fleet in the race from Hobart to Airlie Beach in the Whitsundays. Of the 80 knot winds and electrical storms, Roseann says: “We couldn’t even see the difference from the sky and the sea, it was so pitch black after the lightning. I’d never seen anything like that before so it was really cool!”
Hotelplanner.com, led by Derry-Londonderry Skipper Conall Morrison, is currently expected to arrive in Sanya between 0700 and 1300 local time Friday February (2300 UTC Thursday 22 February and 0500 UTC Friday 23 February)