This blog originally appeared on the Clipper Round the World website as a skipper report from Jeronimo Gonzalez, skipper of the Punta Del Este yacht

The 2019-20 edition of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race is the first to include an Additionally Qualified Person (AQP) on each of the yachts to support the team skipper. As the learning and development partner of the race, GRA supported the race organisers in profiling both the skippers and AQP's and matching them to develop the most effective possible leadership pairings to lead teams of amateur sailors on a 40,000nm race around the world.

Race 3, Day 15 by Jeronimo Gonzalez

Ryan Barkey is the AQP (first mate) on the Punta del Este yacht for the Clipper 2019-20 Race. He is Canadian, and he is awesome. He wears a lumberjack shirt, drinks Canadian maple syrup and is as Canadian as he can be. We were put together after completing some personality matching exercises by the race’s Learning and Development Supplier, Grahame Robb Associates. I don't know how they did it, but they got it spot on!

The first time we met, we opened up, and agreed that if we were going to spend a year sailing together, that we would make the most of it and really support each other. Definitely a winning formula, although we work on our sailing relationship every day to make it work and to improve it all the time.

I am really fortunate to have Ryan on board. My style of skippering is really inclusive and we both share all the aspects of boat operations and management. We are a 50/50 partnership; he is my right hand and sometimes my left one. We watch each other's backs and we push each other to work smarter on this great adventure sailing around the world.

The crew love Ryan, the Clipper Race office love Ryan, Punta del Este supporters love Ryan, and he has a female club fun all around the world, judging from the response to his video appearances!!

I know we will achieve great things during this race and in future sailing adventures. Barkey keep being who you are, we all love you for it.

The Punta del Este crew described him as; "he is a great matroos” (sailor in Afrikaan) -Andrew. "He doesn't stop"-Mary. "Efficient and valiant"-Maria. "A saltwater cowboy" - Andres "Knowledgeable, humble, happy and helpful" - Esteban. "He is Mc Giber, my hero"- Kati. "optimistic and resourceful" -Graham. "Top banana" - David H.

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