The Clipper Race isn't a cheap activity. Therefore, it makes sense to do as much as you can to make yourself as useful as possible on the race.
To paraphrase John F Kennedy "ask not what your crew can do for you, but what you can do for your crew". Improve your skill set!
Making yourself as knowledgable as possible means you can give more to the boat. Giving more to the boat means you get more back. It's that simple. You should read the Clipper Training manual before Level 1, especially if you are a non-sailor. In fact, if you already sail, reading the Clipper manual is probably just as important, because you'll be learning 'the Clipper way'! Ask the office for the PDF.
Before Level 1 Training
You need to decide what is useful to you. If you're a non-sailor just buy the Competent Crew book and knots book (or an app). Day Skipper is a bit too advanced.
Before Level 2 Training
Level 2 is spent largely at sea. After building on level 1 training, you'll be off to experience spending time in a watch system. An ideal opportunity to put into practice sail trim and 'tweaking'. Go play! That's what you are at sea for after all.
Before Level 3 and 4 Training
Level 3 concentrates on spinnaker work and race tactics. By now, learning about the weather is also a good idea. There are books produced by the RYA which cover Northern and Southern hemisphere. Dependent on which leg you are racing, consider buying and reading one. They are well illustrated and easy to read.
General Reading for Fun
Certainly not essential reading, but a good read nonetheless...
Fierce Turtle is not associated with the splendid folk at Clipper Ventures. All opinion is our own.
This blog is written by Mark Burkes. He raced in the 2011/12 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race as 'round-the-world crew' and in the 13/14 Race he was Relief Race Skipper on Team Garmin (CV27).
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