Challenger - GBR301 A new command style

on . Posted in 2016 Blogs

Keen observers will have noted that everyone and his dog in this race has now ground to a halt as the high we were all looking to skirt round took a quick step to the left (No, my left not your left) and consumed the fleet. We have spent many hours today at a mighty 1 knot, whistled and hooted as breakneck speeds of 2 and 3 knots came and went and hit a new philosophical high as we stepped past that all too human reaction to adversity- to believe its the end of the world and nothing will ever go right ever again.

So many times in a career of 20 years in sail training and being a professional skipper I have had to smile when this characteristic is revealed by this strange life at sea- take for example our present situation- within only a few hours of runing into the high some of the crew started (gently) fretting about flights out of Grenada and whether they would even make it home for Christmas - simply because the chart plotter started spitting out numbers like 1000hrs(40 days?)to Grenada. Its easy to forget as a more experienced sailor and perhaps a more experienced human being that we all have to learn at some point the lesson of not being unduly reactive to changing circumstances-that to avoid unnecessary stress in life we need to take a long term view of Triumph and Disaster 'and treat those two impostors just the same'. Sure there is no wind right now- but relax it will come- it always does and then things will work themselves out as they always do. Its all very Zen and I think we can take from this discussion that yes, sailing is like life - it's easy to be philosophical when you are sharing your misery with others.

I am thinking I will make this part of my command style from now on.... just now I remonstrated with a helm over his poor course holding abilities by simply doing a wiggly fish motion with my hand- ha! what more did i need to say? They will say of me that I was firm but fair and no one will ever complain about my tone of voice again. Genius.

All good on Challenger.

CSM