Well, the dream is starting to come true bit by bit. We have been renamed from Team Pete to Team Great Britain! It is beyond my wildest dreams to be associated with flying the flag for Britain around the world with this team on the longest yacht race in the world.
I must of course say that all the Clipper boats are equal, after all that is the whole point of the race - a level playing field for all those involved, so it really is a true test of seamanship and working together as a team but to have the GB logo on my own shirt - I am beyond proud. As each team develops their own ethos and culture, I think it's pretty clear that ours will be a bulldog spirit! It's ramped the game up 100%. We really want to win! The pressure to do well is entirely self-generated and we will give it our all. If anything will keep us going in the low points it will be that flag on our sail.
So having the British government sponsor boat means we will do some corporate stuff in each port to fly the flag, get sponsored kit and of course take part in the associated press frenzy at each stopover. It's going to be great! The start and finish at St Kat's in London will be particularly spectacular. You can't get much more British than Tower Bridge!
Once the news was officially announced Facebook went crazy - imagine 48 people across the country jumping up and down like school kids with delirious grins on our faces! I must admit I even shed a few tears. Stuff like this doesn't usually happen to people like me - but it is! And to top off the week I got a call from Team Origin who are organising the America's Cup series in Portsmouth in July to say they'd like me to be part of their water front team. Oh my God! Part of the whole America's Cup event - just amazing. Come on Sir Ben!!!
So onwards and upwards for Team GB. L4 training has just started (mine's in July) so we get to practice race starts, more spinnaker work and race tactics etc. It'll be a full on simulated race week. The logistics of the whole race are starting to swing in to action from food surveys to items to be bought with the crew fund. We are all chipping in some cash to provide a few luxuries such as a rice and pasta cooker, bulk buy of sunscreen, a decent waterproof sound system, helming gloves and maybe even some padded seats for sitting on the rail with! Next up is the teambuilding weekend in London in a couple of weeks - with activities concocted by the Team Coordinators (Phil and Wing Co.) to bond us, sundowners in various pub gardens plus the chance to have a posh dinner on board HQS Wellington on the Sunday. I can't wait to see my crew mates again. Happy, Happy Team GB x