Diary of a Clipper Racer
Around the world in 333 days with Mark Osgood
Supporting my chosen charity - "Dreams Come True"
Final Diary entry, 54, added Monday 6th October 2003.
The Crew - The Regulars
During the year, I will talk a lot about the crew of London. I’ll share the entire year with six other people and we’ll be joined on each leg by different people – the leggers. I’ll introduce them as they arrive on the boat but for now will introduce my fellow round the worlders.
Firstly, there is the skipper, Chris Hazeldine, aka The Admiral. The Admiral is an ex-Royal Marine who’s been sailing all his life and racing for most of it. His experience, together with his excellent teaching abilities, have made me a competent sailor much quicker than I would otherwise have been. He doesn’t suffer fools, and is not afraid to let them know. But he’s also very quick to praise, so you know where you are with him. I like the fact that he gets stuck in as one of the crew but at the same time stands apart from the crew by virtue of his experience and leadership. He also likes going on “the lash” in port, so we get on very well. God help the girls in the fleet though! Celebrity look-a-like is Steve McQueen.
Jane Black aka Jazz is a fellow beach party organiser whom I knew when I signed up to the Race as we have many mutual friends. Jazz is another complete novice who learnt about the Race when friends took part in the 2000 Race, so she’s been the source of stories from last time. With her other half, Jon, having been in the navy, Jazz is likely to be the main source of daft games to wile away the many hours off watch. She is also the ships media and PR representative. Celebrity look-a-like is Anneka Rice (very tenuous!)
The other female round the worlder is Lesley, aka Hyacinth (after Hyacinth Bucket following the loss of three buckets over the side in training). Lesley is a recent addition to London. It seems she is a bit of a party animal although her taste in party music leaves something to be desired. Another one for daft games, I suspect. Hyacinth is the ship’s victualler, which involves feeding us throughout the trip. The suspicion is that she has something going on with the managing director of Fray Bentos, considering the number of pies that she has acquired. Celebrity look-a-like to be decided.
Of the boys, firstly there is Iain Cook, aka Cookie. I did my Part A training with Cookie and got some insight into the sort of people who do this trip immediately when he ended up in the marina on the first night, before we had even left the berth, following a night on the sauce. He calls his artificial legs his “other half”, and, after his dip, left them out to dry on the stern for the rest of that week to keep them from rusting! His role involves the ship’s computer and weather reports. Celebrity look-a-like is Jeremy Clarkson (again very tenuous!).
Next is Jeremy Fox-Green, aka Foxy. Another city boy who’s given up sailing a desk for a year, Foxy is a very accomplished sailor who has already been appointed as one of the watchleaders on London. He’s dubbed the “Flying Fox” as he is the ship’s rigger and is more than happy to get hoisted up the mast to sort out whatever has gone wrong up there – rather him than me. Has spent far too much time on board already as he knows where everything is down to the colour of the plastic bag it is stored in. Celebrity look-a-like is Damon Hill.
Next, there’s Ben Bryant, aka Big Ben. Ben is the quiet one among us who seems to have packed more into his 26 years than most would in a lifetime. Another one of our inspirational crewmembers, he had a kidney transplant some years ago. Big Ben is the man responsible when the sails need repairing, as he spent some time on courses learning how to use a needle and cotton. Celebrity look-a-like is still to be decided.
Last but not least, there is the ship’s mouse, Guy de Roquefort, and the ship’s cat, Marcus Stickleback. Both are about as much use as a chocolate teapot and we are not sure how they will survive on a diet of dried curry like the rest of us. However, they will be a source of amusement for us all as the days and nights pass with nothing on the horizon. Celebrity look-a-likes are Tom and Jerry.
London Crew Seeking Advice From Ellen MacArthur.....