Header image: Henri Lloyd in St Katharine Docks before the race start

Level 2

“Don’t waste your time”

A debrief, after the cushions were put away

Well, the last day of my level 2 course in June came, it was hot, we were already berthed and we had the deep-clean to look forward to. Truth is no-one particularly looks forward to it, exactly, but it is, a bit like emptying the bilges, necessary. The entire boat is emptied and every surface…

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How to not empty the bilges!

One of the heads

When we arrived our skipper allocated us into two watches of five people each – during the race the 20 of us will be divided into two watches in a similar way. Then the jobs that needed to be done during each day were divided up into a rota so that we all got a…

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Racing Without Wind

Our fellow Level 2 training vessels

After our offshore period, for our last day at sea our training skippers had it in mind that we could do some racing against each other. They didn’t let the mere fact that the day dawned without any wind put them off that idea. We motored out of Portland Marina then spent the morning doing…

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Going overboard

Piers being rescued by Ali, photo by Kong Chian Toh

“Man overboard!” – that’s a phrase you really don’t want to hear, much less be the person in the water! Though I guess if you are the person in the water you would be quite glad to hear it – at least it means that the crew has seen you and the boat will be…

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Is that still Start Point? No, again!

We’d spent the first few days of the course day sailing. This allowed us to consolidate what we’d learned on our Level 1 courses, which for some were the previous week and others several months previously. It also accommodated the sea survival course that the rest of the crew members needed to do. I’d already…

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Sometimes it’s good not to be strong enough

Bunks, upper with leecloth tied

Each of us sleeps in a bunk. It has a mattress and enough space for you and your sleeping bag. And in port or under engine power, it’s horizontal. But we will be sailing. When under sail, the boat and therefore your bunk will be at an angle. So it has a “leecloth” which can,…

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