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An AMA with Pip Hare

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This AMA is now complete, thank you for all your questions!

At 8pm tonight, Pip Hare, who recently completed the Vendée Globe, will be our second special guest in a new series of Ask Me Anything sessions on the YBW forum.

Pip amassed a huge following during her exploits in the 2020/21 Vendée Globe crossing the finish line in an impressive 19th place despite having one of the oldest boats in the fleet and one of the smallest budgets. She is only the 8th ever female skipper to complete the Vendée Globe. Facing a raft of difficulties during her Vendée Globe race, at the end of November 2020 her boat, Medallia lost one of its hydrogenerators, meaning she had to save her diesel reserves for power generation, leaving her with no heating in the south.

pip-hare-vendee-globe-rudder-repair-credit-medallia

On 2 January her wind sensor broke down, leaving her with no reliable wind information. Her only option was to set her autopilot to compass mode, sleeping with one hand on the pilot remote control at all times in case of sudden wind shifts.

It seemed disaster had struck mid-Pacific, when her port rudder stock cracked and it looked, briefly, as if Pip’s competitive race would be over. She was, she admitted, devastated. However, in a typical can-do attitude, Pip Hare managed to remove and replace the rudder, and resumed racing having lost just two places.

During the course of the race, Pip Hare’s brilliant communication – be it written or via her regular video reports – showed everyone what Yachting World has known for many years; not only is she a gifted sailor, but she is a talented communicator too.

Pip will be joining us at 8pm tonight to answer questions about her career, how she got to the Vendée start (and finish) line, what her plans are now and anything else boat related you may be inclined to ask!
 
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Pip Hare

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The big goal is Vendee 2024, but there is a lot to do in the meantime. I am looking forward to club racing on Thursday nights in Poole, hopefully the 3 peaks yacht race this year, the round the island race and then the IMOCA globe series. There's a lot to do
 

sarabande

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You sere concerned at one stage that you had overslept. What sleep deprivation training and tactics do you use ?
 

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Slight problem with PH reply going into moderation queue. Manual overrides taking place.
 

Pip Hare

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I have sort of learned to sleep in naps over the last 12 years of solo racing and I don't really train but just adjust my style. I have various alarms to wake me up while I am racing and normally it works
 

Pip Hare

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How long do you sleep for at a time before your wind sensor broke down versus when you had to sleep with one hand on the pilot remote control?
I was sleeping for around 40 minutes each time, then waking to check everything. When my MHU broke I was sleeping for only 20 minutes when the boat was sailing downwind VMG and I was very sensitive to feel, if the boat felt too flat I would naturally wake up as that was an indication I needed to head up a bit
 

Pip Hare

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Do you have a team assisting you or do you do y'all your own sponsorship and fundraising searching?
I started out doing everything on my own. All the boat prep, admin, marketing, fundraising. Then I got help from friends and volunteers. Now I have a small but perfectly formed team which is made up largely from the people who helped me out along the way.
 

sarabande

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I hesitate to ask a catering question, but what sort of planning do you do for a varied meal regime, and to ensure flexibility of calories in heavy and light weather. How long does fresh food last ?
 

Pip Hare

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I was chartering Superbigou and the charter has come to an end so I delivered it back to France and that is the end of this chapter. I hope the boat will go on to some more adventures. It's a boat with a beautiful history
 

Pip Hare

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I hesitate to ask a catering question, but what sort of planning do you do for a varied meal regime, and to ensure flexibility of calories in heavy and light weather. How long does fresh food last ?
I had a ten day rolling menu of freeze dried food. I worked with a nutritionist and we planned my meals for the race adjusting for more calories in the southern ocean. I was pretty happy with the variety for most of the time but struggled in the last two weeks - I had got a bit bored by then
 

Mknott

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Heya Pip,

Preparation is massively important, but how do you handle the post-race return to normality? Is it tough to switch mindsets?
 

Rum_Pirate

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When Medallia lost one of the hydrogenerators, meaning you had to save diesel reserves for power generation, how did you prepare food or did you exist on 'cold 'rations' for the remainder?
 
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