There will also be an Italian on June 7 in New York at the start of the eighth leg of the 2013/2014 Clipper Round the World Race, the round-the-world stage race reserved for non-professional crews, on the New York-Derry-Londonderry route. It will be embarked on Qingdao, one of 12 Clipper 70s in the race.
THE ITALIAN IN REGATTA
She is Beatrice Cameli, 29, a law degree in Italy before landing in London to also take her English one and become a lawyer in shipping. An industry in the family DNA. Among Beatrice’s great passions is sailing, cultivated from an early age on many family cruises. And a dream in the drawer that he has been talking about with Dad for years: going around the world in Blue Indy, the Hallberg-Rassy of vacations. At the same time as studying for her English degree, Beatrice began working as a paralegal for Hill Dickinson LLP, a leading shipping firm where she will begin her training as an English lawyer next September.
THE CLIPPER ENCOUNTER
Today’s adventure begins for Beatrice a year and a half ago. Indeed, in the subway he takes every day to work, he begins to notice the “advert” of the Clipper Race. “It intrigued me,” he says, “and I went to their website.. The idea was attractive, but when I saw the time commitment to do only one stage, I shelved the idea. I had just started working, and after so many sacrifices with my studies, I certainly couldn’t leave everything behind.” Then the interesting discovery: Hill Dickinson LLP. the firm he works for, is the “official legal partner” of the Clipper Race – in the sense that he provides legal advice for the organization of the event-and since the 2011/2012 edition he has been offered by Clipper the possibility of having one of its members embark for part of the eighth leg, the last one, the one that takes the competitors from New York to London with a stop over in Derry. “When I heard about it, however, I thought they would never choose me,” says Beatrice, “since I had only recently joined and I wasn’t even an English lawyer yet! A few months later, however, an internal email arrives to everyone. It asks if anyone from Hill Dickinson is interested in embarking on the Clipper…. “I didn’t hesitate for a second! I answered right away, and seeing the silence, I did it again a few weeks later, just to make sure that my email had arrived !”The next step is the submission of the “formal application” in which one has to describe in 200 words what this experience means for those who ask to participate and what positive result one assumes the firm will get out of it (marketing, charity…).
“Well 200 words for me was too few to describe what this race meant to me, but after endless attempts, deletions and insertions, I pressed the button and the email went out!” A few days later the response: Beatrice passed the selection along with two others from the Studio, and the three applications are at Clipper Race HQ who have the final decision. “I couldn’t stand it anymore-remembers Beatrice-and then I got the best phone call of my life: Clipper had decided to take me! I couldn’t believe ite!!! I was able to realize a dream and it was all thanks to Hill Dickinson who was giving me this opportunity by sponsoring me and giving me the Time Off Work I needed.” Indeed, three non-consecutive weeks of training in the Solent were planned and then an additional month between preparation in New York and the Atlantic crossing proper.
TRAINING IN THE SOLENT
The first of three weeks of training for Beatrice is very intense. The boats used are the veteran boats that raced in 2011/12. A typical day includes breakfast at 7 a.m. and start of work at 7:30 a.m. You are divided into pairs and the role changes each day: mother (you take care of meals and cleaning), navigator (you listen to the weather report for the day and talk with the skipper about the course for that day), engineer (check engine and generator). At 8 a.m. everyone out to rig the boat! The sails, which usually “sleep” at the crew’s feet, are taken out, opened, set and then hoisted out of the harbor! As soon as we are ready, we start with the maneuvers. Tacks, gybes, man overboard recovery, putting on and taking off reefing hands, changing headsails, and so on listing. Then it’s back to port, getting the boat fixed up, dinner, debriefing on the day and the evening lesson, and around 9 p.m. off we go for a shower at the Marina and, for those who still have energy, beer at the pub .” All in a simply fantastic atmosphere!” emphasizes Beatrice. On-call shifts, of 3 to 4 hours, enter the training in the second and third weeks, in which you sail continuously for six days and reserve the seventh for “big cleaning.”
“I makeno secret of the fact that I have had moments of crisis,” says Beatrice – perhaps from fatigue, from not being able to have a moment to myself, from not being able to take a shower or use fresh water in the bathroom, from having to cook bent over by the wind while fighting nausea, or from the nightmare of having to go to the bathroom during the night, as in: get out of the sleeping bag, climb over the sails, get to the toilet, get back into bed, crawl back into the sleeping bag, trying not to wake anyone up! Things I had underestimated. But the different crews I’ve been a part of have all been just great, and skippers and mates super nice and above all very knowledgeable! By the end of the week we had really bonded with each other. Then again, by sleeping together and not having room to change, it was inevitable that we would eventually get to know each other very well! The most beautiful thing, however, was the spirit we shared , the excitement for this adventure, the same fears of not making it or not feeling up to it, the tiredness or the desire to simply take a nap for half an hour! We were really all in the same “boat” and we all helped each other! The people I met were extremely diverse, with extremely varied professions, but all with interesting stories to tell. And then the spectacle of sunsets and sunrises, of calm sea and rough sea, of the night spent at anchor and waking up surrounded by fog so much that you can’t see a meter from your nose! I already knew how to sail, but the training really gave me an edge! It gave me confidence, made me appreciate teamwork, made me grow as a person, and made me appreciate the little luxuries in life! I knew it would be a good experience, but I never thought it would be so unique. And I still have to do the regatta.”
“This experience for me is really unique and I know it will mark me forever,” Beatrice emphasizes, “so in this context it is important for me to think of others as well. I would like to do this by raising money for AIRC, Liguria Committee, so that even in my small way I can make a contribution. This cause was very important to my grandmother and I want to continue the fantastic work that she did and that she recently, unfortunately, had to stop.”
For donations: account payable to Airc – Liguria Committee No. 919856
BANCA PASSADORE – Genoa Headquarters – via Vernazza, 27
FOR EACH BANK TRANSFER YOU MUST INDICATE: First Name – Last Name and/or Company Name – Address
Causale “Beatrice sailing for AIRC”