After making the decision to buy a boat I realised that there was much experience to be learnt! One of the best ways of building ones sailing knowledge base is to take delivery of a variety of boats under the command of a variety of skippers. Professional Yacht Deliveries World Wide is probably the most established of such companies and they flew me, the skipper and the first mate out to Portugal to meet the owner of Mayfly in May, 2004.
Peter, a semi-retired Brit living in Dartmouth, recently purchased his Swedish 36ft Malo, which at the beginning of the journey was based in Lagos, Portugal. When we arrived it was still in the dry dock on sticks, and two days were spent making some final adjustments before we set sail. Peter had previously owned a cat, so this was his first monohull and thought it wise to employ the expertise of Kevin, a yacht delivery specialist.
When Jamie met Kevin at Gatwick airport Kevin had just returned from another yacht delivery. Indeed Kevin spends about 40 weeks of the year away from home making deliveries around the world. Kevin has an excellent attitude towards sailing and is an excellent teacher. It would be fair to say that Jamie probably learnt more from Kevin on this trip than any other thus far. If you want a constructive sail, sail with Kevin!
As if Kevin’s knowledge wasn’t enough, we were honoured with the presence of Lee, a 28 year old sailor with over 200,000 nm under his belt. Now if you thought you were experienced, then try surviving two hurricanes and one helicopter lift out of a sinking boat! In fact one of the hurricanes Lee survived sadly took the lives of another 120 sailors so it’d be fair to say Lee has as much luck as he has skill. Having recently sold up his sailing school in Menorca Lee is now looking to skipper one of the famous round-the-world Clippers and was using this trip to learn astronavigation (that complicated bit of science requiring a sextant).