Setback to Strength: Scott Shawyer Focusing on 2024 ambitions

Setback to Strength: Scott Shawyer Focusing on 2024 ambitions

It’s been a tumultuous journey for Scott Shawyer and his team since the Transat Jacques Vabre in November 2023, where Scott had to abandon the race. However, recent events have seen a resurgence, with a mix of soul-searching, rebuilding, and intensive training, Scott is back on the water, driven by a renewed focus and determination to tackle the challenges ahead.

In the harsh conditions off the Portuguese and North African coasts, Scott and his team have completed another grueling offshore training session. While competitors are in winter re-fit, Scott’s team is committed to extensive on-water training, believing that big gains are made in the off-season. The recent sessions have focused on preparing Scott for solo sailing in the 2024 IMOCA race schedule, pushing him to “get comfortable with the uncomfortable” amidst punishing conditions of winds exceeding 35 knots and waves up to 5 meters high.

The goal of the training sessions has been to simulate solo sailing conditions, with Scott managing  every aspect of the boat alone. From refining manoeuvres to planning routes and battling fatigue to make crucial decisions, Scott is immersing himself in the solo sailing experience. Each session concludes with Scott transitioning to full solo mode, setting off alone onboard for further training offshore.

Reflecting on the progress made, Scott acknowledges the challenges but also the sense of accomplishment and confidence gained from each training session. With a focus on overcoming and managing seasickness and refining sailing skills, Scott is gearing up for his next major challenge—the solo transatlantic race from New York, USA, to Vendée, France. This race marks a significant milestone in Scott’s sailing career, and he approaches it with the respect and ambition it deserves.

As the team continues to work on boat development in Cascais, Portugal, Scott and his coach, Nick, are preparing for the final training block before Scott undertakes his solo qualifying passage in early April. Seamanship, safety, and boat reliability are the primary objectives and Scott is poised and ready to tackle the challenges of solo offshore racing head-on.

In Scott’s words “The solo offshore racing discipline is relentless and unforgiving, requiring meticulous attention to detail. As we prepare for the next major step in our project plan, I am fueled by excitement and motivation. The pressure is a privilege, and I am embracing the process wholeheartedly.” 

As Scott and the Be Water Positive team gear up for the racing season, enthusiasts can stay updated by following the team’s channels which tomorrow sees the launch of the new series – The Vendée Vision: Scott Shawyer’s Journey.