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Well it really is all over – bar the partying, press tours, video and book etc.

We are now home from Brazil having had a fantastic time enjoying the atmosphere, sights, food, ‘capirinha's’ and company.    Crean is also on her way back to Brighton on a container ship.

It has been an amazing experience for all concerned (even watching from the side lines, we all felt part of it and lived each day with Richard), and telling other friends and family about the race – it has created quite a bit of interest.  As someone quoted ‘we have all been basking in the fringes of Richard’s glory!’ 

I think we all agree it is an incredible achievement and although the main priority was to complete the race safely, the additional bonus of winning the ‘First in class’ prize was the icing on the cake.   Also precedents were set for the first time such small boats have taken part in this renowned race and, as far as we know, the longest non-stop passage (3800) for any mini-transat boat.
                                                     
Thanks to everyone for their donations to Richard’s chosen charity, Chestnut Tree House and to Catherine for the organisation of this.    We will report further on this once all monies are in. Ģ2,500 collected and passed on.

So be inspired and live life to the full – Richard has proved it can be done.

More photos taken onboard during the race are now in the gallery here .

They think it's all over, it is now

To all of you out there.
First of all, thanks to everyone for the messages that were sent to me before, during and after the race. During the race Helen forwarded all the messages to my Iridium phone and believe me they really helped. In fact I was surprised how much they helped so again, thanks to all of you.

The race was tough for all of the obvious reasons, however the worse times were during the very light winds and in the blistering heat. It was often between 85 and 90 degrees at 4.00am, so you can imagine what it was like at midday. I could not stay on deck during the hottest part of the day so lay below sweating and let the boat sail herself.

The finish was amazing with three boats coming out to escort me in. There were fireworks on the quayside, a large crowd cheering and large quantities of alcohol were thrust at me. I didnīt complain!

Since the finish I have been resting and partying and am fairly OK now. No major damage apart from some sore areas and I guess I lost about 8 kilos. They will soon be back on!

Helen, her Dad and I will now spend a couple of weeks in Brazil touring around so hopefully I will be fully refreshed when I return to the UK.

Itīs been quite a ride and strange that the project is now over after four years.

Biggest thanks of course go to Helen without whom nothing would have happened.
She has one question of course. WHAT NEXT???????????

So bye for now, see you all soon.

Again. Thanks to everyone for your support.
Richard

new photos of Richard's arrival have been added to the photo album here and a small video of his arrival here (10MB)

Race Day - 4/1/2006 - 4:57am

Just got up, couldn't sleep, can't think why!

Crean is ready for the trip and so am I. It's going to be hard but hopefully a fantastic experience. Can I thank everyone who has helped me get to this start line, you have all been a great support.

I'll see you all soon. (Terry, video still working thanks).

Richard.            

...and a few SA Photos, just to show how what a terrible time I have had so far..

New Years Eve

Yesterday Crean passed scrutiny by the officials of the Royal Cape Yacht Club. This means she is deemed fit to race and is another huge step towards completing the challenge.

The boat is virtually ready, a little more food is required and a last check of everthing and then it's all systems go. I am not nervous yet but the atmosphere is definitely changing here as the crews rush around completing tasks. Tonight they will party, after that it's gets serious.

It's going to be quite an interesting few days leading up to the start!!


DECEMBER 2005      

So, here I am in Cape Town.

The weather is fantastic although there is a stiff breeze blowing all the time which, as always in marinas, sounds a lot worse than it is. I have burnt my forehead and feet which won't please Helen but it's hard to think of suntan lotion in December.

Crean is in the water but mast is not yet stepped as it needs some work. Boat survived the journey with a little damage to one rudder but was soon fixed. She is a tip at the moment but I will soon have it sorted and can then start planning for the trip itself.

The people here are making a fuss of me, which I hate but one has to try and fit in. They seem to think it's important that I acclimatise myself to biltong and something called beer. I struggle on.

I have just been invited into the country for Xmas staying on a farm in the middle of nowhere. It will do me good to get away from the boat for a while so will probably accept the kind offer.

Today (Weds) I have been asked to race on a VOR (Volvo Ocean Race) 60 by Team Ericsson. They have furnished me with a shirt and hat so should at least look the part!

Thinking of you all in the cold. I turned my GPS on tonight and it told me that I am 5156 miles from Worthing and at 33 degrees south. Weird! There are new stars above me but Orion dominates the sky and the moon looks just like ours.                            

NOVEMBER 2005                        

 

 On Tuesday 8th November CREAN left Brighton on her long journey to South Africa. She has started her journey on the back of a low loader and will be driven to Immingham Docks from where she will be shipped to Cape Town.

 A lot has happened in the last few weeks. The hull has been rubbed down and re-antifouled (white hull, orange rudders and keel) and the spare pilot fitted. The mast has been taken down and strapped to the boat and my thanks go to Glynn Jones for help with this.  I have had jabs for Yellow fever, Hepatitis, Tetanus and Diphtheria and have also attended a Sea Survival course in Southampton where I learnt useful things such as the best way to get into a Liferaft. Hopefully I will never to have to use these skills!

All the gear needed for the trip has been stacked onboard as I really can’t carry all my equipment on the plane.  Crean is only a small boat at 21ft long, however the amount of gear required for this trip is extensive and includes:

List of Gear

A survival box (to take in the Liferaft) containing:  

3 Red Parachute flares

Food

3 red hand flares

Mirror

2 floating smoke

Survival blanket

Light sticks

Torch

Sea dye.

Anti sick pills

Handheld VHF

Inhalers

Knife

Water

Whistle

Spare Garmin GPS

Fishing kit

 

 Crean is due to arrive in Cape Town on approximately 7th December and I fly out on the 10th December via Qatar and Johannesburg. This gives me plenty of time in South Africa to re-build the boat and stock up with food, water and anything I realise I need but haven’t thought of yet! I will also be doing a pre-race in Table Bay and attending all the necessary safety briefings.

During the race I will be raising money to help the 'Chestnut Tree House', a children’s hospice on the outskirts of my home town.  www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk.  The hospice is financed solely by donations and costs around Ģ1.6million per year to run, so they always need funds.

My friend and colleague Catherine Oehlers will be managing this aspect of my project. Any donation to this cause will be gratefully received and will certainly encourage me during the crossing.

How to donate.

 And one more thing:-    

-         The race is now sponsored by Heineken - Hurrah!

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