AN INTREPID teenage student is preparing to embark on a journey of a lifetime by taking part in the Clipper Round the World Race.

Lily Whitehead, 18, of Bridge Street, Chester, has earned herself a place in one of the greatest races on the globe and will soon join her international crewmates in South Africa.

The former Queen’s Park High School pupil, who has been a keen sailor from a young age and follows in the footsteps of dad Alan who has crossed the Atlantic in a yacht, has been saving money for four years for the race.

After applying to Clipper Ventures, a firm set up by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first person to sail single handed and non-stop around the world, Lily was handed a place on the Jamaican Tourist Board’s vessel ‘Jamaica Lightning Bolt’.

The race started on September 13 from Hull and will have visited Europe, Rio de Janeiro and South America before Lily boards the yacht at Cape Town, South Africa, in November.

She will then become an active member for a large section of the race that will take in Fremantle Australia and Qingdao in China before she gets back on dry land in San Francisco, California.

Proud father Alan said: "She has been sailing all her life and for the past four years, this race has been the focal point.

"She was told she had to wait until she was 18 before she could join. It really is an excellent opportunity for her and she will meet some amazing people and visit some amazing places.

"I am comfortable with it as I am used to sailing but I think her mother will be worried. The whole race is run on a safety first basis."

Lily, a member of Chester Sailing and Canoeing Club, will be writing an online blog about her experiences of the race.

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