The tough life on an Ocean Racer
Racing in the Volvo Ocean Race, is tough at the best of times. It's hard to picture
what it must be like to live on board a stripped out racing machine, which is
what the VO60 class is, for weeks on end, in cramped conditions with 11 other
people. It's either freezing cold or unbearably hot. It's wet and it's uncomfortable
The six sleeping bags are constantly damp and are shared between the 12 crew.
It's hard, almost impossible to stand up when the boat is pitching through heavy
Seasickness is one of the most debilitating illnesses and it can affect anyone,
even the world's most professional racers, leaving you demotivated and afraid
Can you imagine what it must feel like for the crews who must press the boat
hard, day and night, while suffering from seasickness? There's no eating because
that just comes straight back up. But you still have to try and keep some fluids,
if you can, have a protein shake or something like that.
Volvo Ocean Race first-timer, Chris Nicholson from Amer Sports One, explains
how it feels: "You're falling asleep all the time on deck because you've
already been sick and so you're through that stage and you're pretty much debilitated.
It's like your worst hangover and it affects the whole body, your mind and your
stomach. When you're that sick you're trying so hard not to move around anywhere,
you've got no energy and you've got no control over where you're moving so you
just keep the body as still as possible. The guys would probably let you stay
in your bunk, but you just can't, as you just have to get on and do your job"
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