THE BLOG

Race Day

14/10/2014 10:04 BST | Updated 11/12/2014 10:59 GMT

Today myself and the crew of SCA crossed the start line in Alicante for the 6,487 mile leg to Cape Town in South Africa, it is one of the longest legs of the race and the forecast for the first few days is light and tricky. The first challenge will be to get out of the Mediterranean, we don't want to get left behind so the first 24 hours will be crucial in order to stay in touch and not let anyone make a break for it.

For the last 48 hours I have felt shockingly calm, there really comes a point where you prepare, and prepare and prepare, you check all your boxes and you are ready. We are ready, everyone has given everything they could to be ready and we cannot wait to get this party started. We have been building up for this for such a long time, so that this morning on race day no one was freaking out, we have the most amazing support team behind us and they have prepared us so well.

It has been so hectic here in Alicante, it seems like a moment ago that we arrived for the first time. For myself i'm really excited, it's an amazing story that I am about to tell and I can't wait to start telling it, we really are heading into a journey of the unknown and that's the most exciting part about it for all of us.

This is the the longest time we will have been offshore ever, so it is a baptism of fire. The atmosphere across the race village and in the city of Alicante has been electric, everywhere we go we see a sea of Magenta t-shirts, flags, visors and smiling faces greeting us and wishing us luck. There is no end to the love we have felt especially in the last fews days and that has made this experience even more special for us. Everyone says they have a good sponsors, but we have an awesome sponsor in SCA. One that believes in women's rights across the world, that believes that every women has the right to live life to the fullest without boundaries and they want to provide products that make that possible for women across the globe. They have given us this opportunity to reach our potential, to break boundaries and hopefully carry a message and inspire women everywhere.

The atmosphere in the race village for departure was huge, thousands of people lining the dockside and the beaches to see us off. Soon the time came and we walked through a sea of supporters to stand on the dock, waiting for those final minutes with family, friends and our support team, and then the music starts our theme song a cover of Wake Me Up we recorded just a week ago. The time was upon us, the lines were untied and the cast back to the boat, this was really happening. Leg 1 is always an eye opener for everyone, it's the first leg, its a very challenging and tricky one, we're going to have extremely hot weather, trade winds hopefully, and we finish off in the Southern Ocean in really cold weather and not to forget going through the Doldrums a particularly tricky area of the world to sail in, where the winds from the north and south meet causing either no wind or lots of wind. So there are gains and losses to be made and a commitment to fight and never give up.

For the crew of Team SCA we have divided this race up into a lot of different races - nine in total. All the way we will keep working. We will keep learning. And our goal is to be proud of ourselves when the race is over.

Leg One to Cape Town, South Africa, starts on October 11, 2014. The fleet is due to complete the 6,487-mile leg on about November 4, 2014.

Team SCA Crew - Leg One

1. Sally Barkow - Driver & Trimmer

2. Carolijn Brouwer - Driver & Trimmer

3. Sophie Ciszek - Bow

4. Sam Davies - Skipper & Watch Captain

5. Abby Ehler - Pit & Boat Captain

6. Libby Greenhalgh - Navigator

7. Sara Hastreiter - Bow & Pit

8. Stacey Jackson - Bow

9. Annie Lush - Trimmer

10. Justine Mettraux - Trimmer & Driver

11. Liz Wardley - Watch Captain

Corinna Halloran - OnBoard Reporter