Epic Atlantic race for amateur yachtsman

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Sailing for six weeks and battling Atlantic storms are just two of the daunting challenges facing a Boston businessman next month.

Despite being a self-confessed sailing ‘novice’ Jonathan 
Padley is just days away from taking part in the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race.

Featuring 12 identically-built 70ft yachts, the race is already underway – with Britain currently in second place. The yachts are racing for 40,000 miles over the course of a year.

Jonathan will take part in the last of eight legs for Team GB from June 1 - with the added pressure of being part of the crew heading to the finish line.

“I was a total novice when I signed up to do this,” said Jonathan, 46. “But I’ve been training for over two years now and have got my RYA qualifications.”

Jonathan, who owns Haven Business Park, off Slippery Gowt Lane, will be part of a crew of 20 in the boat racing for 24 hours a day - with fours hours on, four hours rest repeated over six weeks.

“I’m very lucky to have been selected for the Great Britain team,” he said. “I’m expecting the experience to be a real mixed bag in terms of the roles I will be taking on in the crew. It will be challenging as we will be sailing through hurricanes and all sorts – it’s going to be quite intense.”

His section of the race will see just two stop-overs on dry land for repairs and maintenance to the vessel.

The route will take Jonathan from New York, 2,850 miles to Londonderry, Northern Ireland, across the North Atlantic to the Netherlands.

The final ‘homecoming’ leg will see his crew race the last 250 miles across the North Sea to finish at London’s Tower Bridge on July 12. This will take two days.

He said: “The eighth leg of the race I’m in will be the defining races. Britain is currently in second place – so it’s going to be tough.”

Jonathan decided to take part in the arduous race for ‘a challenge and an adventure’ – but he also sees it as an ideal opportunity to raise funds for Macmillan which cared for his late father.

“The work the Macmillan nurses did for my dad – making his final weeks and months comfortable at home, and enabling him to depart this world with some dignity – is invaluable to thousands of families like mine and is a debt I have wanted to repay for many years. I hope to raise £1 per mile I race.”

His mother and his cousin have also fought cancer.

To keep up to date with Jonathan’s progress visit www.paddersatlanticchal

To donate visit his Justgiving page at www.justgiving.com/paddersatlanticchal