Mark Pigram
17
Oct 2013

Mark decided to take 15 months out of his career as management consultant to do something totally outside his comfort zone both physically and personally which also fed his competitive streak. Over the 11 months, he fully anticipates his views on the world and his place in it will change significantly. We caught up with him yesterday en route to Cape Town about his experiences to date:

One of the things you were most looking forward to pre-race was arriving into ports like Rio. Did it live up to expectations? Arriving into Rio was great. Having never been before it surprised me how mountainous the terrain is and also how green everything was. From the point of view of visiting the city, it was everything I expected. Seeing Christ the Redeemer and Copacabana Beach was exactly as you'd imagine. Celebrating the achievement of crossing an ocean and the victory in the race was a highlight. Obviously a big expectation arriving in port is indulging in those items we haven't had on the boat. In that respect Rio was fantastic with a wide range of fresh fruit available, along with the treats of beer, still beds and warm showers.

Looking back on Leg 1 how did you handle living/racing on board a 70ft yacht with 20 people you’ve barely met? Living on board with 20 relative strangers went surprisingly well. With such an intense build up in Gosport, on the delivery to London, and the week in St Katharine Docks a lot of the crew had already gotten to know each other. This kind of adventure attracts people of a similar nature and with a shared sense of adventure. The achievements of the crew on board PSP Logistics prior to the Clipper Race are amazing; these people aren't short of courage, enthusiasm or determination. Some of the challenges I faced when living in such close quarters were differing standards people had for completing tasks and cleanliness (both higher and lower than mine), the differing work ethics of others, and finding a balance of the reason people were on board. Some people’s main goal is to win, while for others it's about the experience more than the result. For me during leg one the highs were the banter and conversation amongst the crew. We had a laugh every day, even during the Doldrums. The victory was particularly sweet, more so because Jamaica - Clipper Race Team made us work so hard for it. Such close racing after 5,500 miles of sailing was unbelievable. The lows were more physical and included the heat during the Doldrums and the associated lack of sleep. I don't think I'd fully understood how the change of crew (in Rio) would affect me, nor how significant it would be. A lot of the pre-race focus had been on how to ensure the new crew would be integrated, not a lot had gone into the impact the leaving crew would have. Our next victim will be Leg 2 crew member Andrew Squires. If you’d like to ask Andrew or any of the other crew a question, let us know and we’ll add it to the list.

  • Team PSP Logistics after winning Race 2

  • Trish Dixie naming PSP Logistics

  • Trish Dixie naming PSP Logistics

  • The naming ceremony

  • Sir RKJ and Trish Dixie

  • Sir RKJ

  • Stepping the mast

  • Chris Hollis - Skipper of PSP Logistics

  • Before PSP Logistics was branded and launched