I began sailing aged 9 in an Optimist on a small reservoir near Swindon. I distinctly remember my first session; being bundled out of the car into a sailing centre full of children the same age as me. Then, the horror of putting on a wetsuit, still wet and slimy from the day before, and heading out into the rain, wind and cold of a glorious British summer’s day.
It all paled into insignificance though when I felt the speed and force of the wind acting on the boat, and then the sheer freedom and EXCITEMENT of being alone on the water! I had discovered a sport that offered no limits.
Over the next few years, sailing slowly became a bigger and bigger part of my life. I would read, watch, and search up anything and everything I could about the sport.
In 2020, I set off on the adventure of a lifetime – sailing single-handed around Britain. At 15, I had to push myself harder than ever before, finding new limits and gaining experience that would prove vital in the years to come.
Last year, I pushed myself harder than ever before; weeks after completing my A-Levels, I completed my first ever professional solo offshore race; 50 hours of gruelling sailing off the west coast of France.
As the youngest in the fleet, I was up against established professional sailors with years of experience.
It was an important step and confirmed to me that I am ready for the next big step, working towards the Solitaire du Figaro 2024. The race is renowned for breeding the sailing legends of the future. Every Vendée Globe winner since 1992 has previously finished the Solitaire du Figaro.