Who am I?

My name is Tim Granger. The photo here was taken on my 25th birthday, the 26th of May, in 2001. Before I get too many comments I was at Metropolitan Regatta, had been up since about 5am that morning on 4 hours sleep, had already raced, and never smile for photos. Well, not entirely true - I smiled for a graduation photo taken in July 1997, for which I have the photographer to thank/blame. I tend to get the 'convict/insane' look when I try and smile for photos, so have tended to avoid trying...

I was born in Cambridge, UK, and have lived there all my life. I attended school here, and got into skiing with some of my family. I then went to the University here in October 1994, to King's College as an undergraduate to study Mathematics, changing to Computer Science after my first year. I started rowing at College, and have done ever since then.

After I graduated, I took the easy option and got a one year research job with the Computer Lab at the University. That led to my starting a PhD, for which I am still studying.

The sum total of my sailing experience before applying for the race was limited to a couple of trips in dingies, and some corporate trips on sailing barges around the north coast of Holland. One fun memory of a go in a dingy was at a camp at Grafham Water - there was a group of us there, all going out in single person boats for the afternoon. I was so keen to get out that I slightly embellished on my experienced and missed the briefing on how to actually sail to get straight on the water. It can't be that difficuilt I thought! I actually managed alright by trial and error, managing not to capsize. After a while, a launch came out to see if I was okay, and asked me to demonstate a tack. Not knowing what they were really asking for, I gybed, which seemed to satisfy them. It's only recently that I've actually been able to make sense of those memories as to what I actually did!

So why did I apply? I suppose the only phrase is 'it caught the imagination'. I read an article in the ET at the start of the 2000-2001 race, and followed the link given to the website. Pretty much by then I though 'I could do this' - it just fitted. I've always been quite competitive, so the idea of it being a fair race appeals, I've loved the little bit of sailing I had done until then; it also gave me something after my PhD to focus on and to motivate me to get my research finished. I suppose I've also been influenced by my sister, Caroline, who has done quite a bit of backpacking around the world.

I think at the interview I started to get my first doubts about whether I could actually rise to the challenge - the money, the sailing, the conditions, the time, etc. However, I'm sure this is just a sane reaction to being pushed; there's no point setting out to do something that you know you can achieve. You'll just plateau out and not stretch yourself.

So that's about it really - feel free to have a look at my journal and the galleries of photo on this site. If you want to get in touch, then either via email to tim@mcshane.org or you can leave comments on my guestbook.