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Gijón City and the Golden Globe Race enter partnership to host the GGR Prologue in Gijón, Asturias, Spain

It was announced today in Gijón, that the Golden Globe Race is partnering with the Spanish Port City of Gijón for a week of activities starting 6th August.

It will conclude with The SITraN Challenge Race to Les Sables d’Olonne and the start of the 2022 Golden Globe Race.

Gijón, a successful tourism destination in Asturias, northern Spain, has hosted numerous nautical events over the past 30 years, positioning itself as a traditional destination for numerous French offshore races and rallies such as La Barquera, Pornic-Gijon, Gascogne-Asturias or Royan-Gijon.

It is also the stop-over for many short-handed offshore racing classes, such as the Figaro, Mini 6,50, Class 40 and IMOCA 60, making the city a natural choice to host the GGR fleet for a week of festivities and preparation around the values of solo-sailing and adventurous voyages.

Ana González Rodríguez, Mayor of Gijón/Xixón welcomed the GGR:

It is a great honour to host the prologue of the Golden Globe Race in our city. Gijón offers all the necessary conditions to welcome the sailors and the entire organisation, who will find here the perfect venue to prepare for this important nautical event.

González Rodríguez, Mayor of Gijón/Xixón

“The Golden Globe Race are grateful to the City of Gijon and Gijon Turismo for partnering with us for this event” said Don McIntyre, President and Founder of the Golden Globe Race. “This will be the first time that all GGR entrants have assembled in one place and the first time for most to visit Gijon, a maritime city renowned for its hospitality, culture, and gastronomy”.

The GGR fleet of 22 yachts representing 12 nationalities will be hosted by the Puerto Deportivo de Gijon, well versed in welcoming sailors from all over the world with modern installation in the heart of the city.

They will have a busy week of final GGR preparations of their boats and attending safety briefings, setting up satellite tracking and communications systems specific to the Golden Globe. These systems are finally checked by the organisers with entrants at sea sailing to Les Sables d’Olonne. Entrants will also have time to discover the city and the many events during their stay.

This is a clear commitment of our city to all activities related to the sea, and reinforces that intimate link with the Bay of Biscay which is, perhaps, the main characteristic of our identity as Gijoneses and Gijonesas.

Daniel Martínez Junquera, Director of Visita Gijón/Xixón

The GGR skippers set sail on Sunday 14th August racing the SITraN Challenge, a 280-mile race to Les Sables d’Olonne, the Capital of Adventure and home of the GGR, on time for the opening of the Race Village on August 20th. That leaves just two weeks for final preparations before the start of the longest, loneliest sporting event of the planet on September 4th.

View of the city from Campa Torres. Image: Victor Estevez Gomez – www.machbel.com

I am delighted that the beautiful city of Gijón will be carving its name in the history of the GGR, a legendary race. Our Spanish cousin city will launch the prologue of an adventure that promises to be thrilling. On the other side of the Bay of Biscay, the pontoons of Les Sables d’Olonne will be waiting for the skippers for two weeks of festivities before D-day. The pressure is mounting for those who are about to take the start of the longest sporting event in the world.

Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne
The Bay of Les Sables d’Olonne. Image: Alexandre Lamoureux

For more information

For entries and information

Don McIntyre


Founder & President
don@goldengloberace.com
Phone-WhatsApp: +61 481231710

Sébastien Delasnerie


Race Director
sebastien@goldengloberace.com
Phone-WhatsApp: +33 (0)764248706

About the Golden Globe Race

The Golden Globe Race is the original round the world yacht race. In 1968, while man was preparing to take his first steps on the moon, a mild mannered and modest young man was setting out on his own record-breaking voyage of discovery.

Offshore yacht racing changed forever with adventurers and sailors, inspired by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, following in his pioneering wake. Nine men started the first solo non-stop sailing race around the World. Only one finished. History was made. Navigating with a sextant, paper charts and an accurate and reliable time piece, Sir Robin navigated around the world.

In 2018, to celebrate 50 years since that first record-breaking achievement, the Golden Globe Race was resurrected. It instantly caught the attention of the world’s media as well as adventures, captivated by the spirit and opportunity.

The original race is back.

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Mark Sinclair, back to les Sables d’Olonne after 174 days at sea, finishes his Golden Globe Race 2018

Mark Sinclair, back to les Sables d’Olonne after 174 days at sea, finishes his Golden Globe Race 2018

Just after 2:00 pm today, on Friday the 27th, Captain Coconut Mark Sincliar (Australia) crossed the famous Nouch Sud cardinal buoy off Les Sables d’Olonne, France, ending a 174-day solitary voyage at sea.

Short on water, plagued by a barnacle invasion, the competitor in the 2018 Golden Globe Race had chosen to stop in his home port as Christmas approached.

Became the first entry in the 2022 Golden Globe Race, Mark resumed his journey three years later on December 5th, 2021, in order to return to the starting point.

Sinclair therefore becomes the last competitor to finish the GGR 2018, and first in the Chichester Class (one stop-over only), the GGR 2018 edition not having a time limit.

After sailing up the mythical channel of Les Sables d’Olonne, Mark Sinclair moored Coconut at the Vendée Globe pontoon at 15:30, welcomed by Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables-d’Olonne, Don McIntyre, founder of the Golden Globe Race, and Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, winner of the 2018 GGR.

The people of Les Sables d’Olonne, who are currently celebrating the Vendée Va’a, came in large numbers to show their admiration and give a warm welcome to the Australian sailor.

“The people of Les Sables are always proud and happy when a great sailor returns to Port Olona. Welcome Captain Coconut, who after 174 days at sea with no electronics, is joining the training pontoons of the world’s longest sporting event. It takes a lot of courage and panache to go on one Adventure after another and to embark on another old-fashioned circumnavigation of the globe. The GGR 2022 has many surprises in store for us and promises to keep us on our toes as the competitors are so motivated to enter the legend.” says Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne.

After weathering four successive storms in February while rounding Cape Horn, Sinclair, an oceanographer and former Australian Navy Captain, thought he had done the hardest part, but ended up in a very deep low-pressure system mid-May before entering the Bay of Biscay, being knocked down twice, damaging his forestay, inner forestay and his last satellite phone.

To spice-up his finish, Mark has run out of cooked meals and toilet paper for days! Don McIntyre, President of the Golden Globe Race plans to supply him with a special “round the world” menu from La Mie Câline, partner of local circumnavigator Arnaud Boissière.

Since leaving Les Sables D’Olonne in July 2018, Mark has spent a total of 332 days at sea to complete his circumnavigation. He barely has 100 days left to recover from his half circumnavigation before the start of the GGR 2022!

Les Sables-d’Olonne, city of the Vendée Globe and Adventure capital will be hosting the Golden Globe Race village from 20th August 2022. The start will be given on September 4th, in the heart of one of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World.

Last March, 11 of the 23 skippers, representing 8 of the 13 nationalities taking part in the race, came to Les Sables-d’Olonne for their preparation and that of their boat in accordance with the Notice of Race, making Port Olona the preparation base for the longest sporting event in the world.

Mark Sinclair, back to les Sables d’Olonne after 174 days at sea, finishes his Golden Globe Race 2018

Just after 2:00 pm today, on Friday the 27th, Captain Coconut Mark Sincliar (Australia) crossed the famous Nouch Sud cardinal buoy off Les Sables d’Olonne, France, ending a 174-day solitary voyage at sea.

Short on water, plagued by a barnacle invasion, the competitor in the 2018 Golden Globe Race had chosen to stop in his home port as Christmas approached.

Became the first entry in the 2022 Golden Globe Race, Mark resumed his journey three years later on December 5th, 2021, in order to return to the starting point.

Sinclair therefore becomes the last competitor to finish the GGR 2018, and first in the Chichester Class (one stop-over only), the GGR 2018 edition not having a time limit.

After sailing up the mythical channel of Les Sables d’Olonne, Mark Sinclair moored Coconut at the Vendée Globe pontoon at 15:30, welcomed by Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables-d’Olonne, Don McIntyre, founder of the Golden Globe Race, and Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, winner of the 2018 GGR.

The people of Les Sables d’Olonne, who are currently celebrating the Vendée Va’a, came in large numbers to show their admiration and give a warm welcome to the Australian sailor.

“The people of Les Sables are always proud and happy when a great sailor returns to Port Olona. Welcome Captain Coconut, who after 174 days at sea with no electronics, is joining the training pontoons of the world’s longest sporting event. It takes a lot of courage and panache to go on one Adventure after another and to embark on another old-fashioned circumnavigation of the globe. The GGR 2022 has many surprises in store for us and promises to keep us on our toes as the competitors are so motivated to enter the legend.” says Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne.

After weathering four successive storms in February while rounding Cape Horn, Sinclair, an oceanographer and former Australian Navy Captain, thought he had done the hardest part, but ended up in a very deep low-pressure system mid-May before entering the Bay of Biscay, being knocked down twice, damaging his forestay, inner forestay and his last satellite phone.

To spice-up his finish, Mark has run out of cooked meals and toilet paper for days! Don McIntyre, President of the Golden Globe Race plans to supply him with a special “round the world” menu from La Mie Câline, partner of local circumnavigator Arnaud Boissière.

Since leaving Les Sables D’Olonne in July 2018, Mark has spent a total of 332 days at sea to complete his circumnavigation. He barely has 100 days left to recover from his half circumnavigation before the start of the GGR 2022!

Les Sables-d’Olonne, city of the Vendée Globe and Adventure capital will be hosting the Golden Globe Race village from 20th August 2022. The start will be given on September 4th, in the heart of one of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World.

Last March, 11 of the 23 skippers, representing 8 of the 13 nationalities taking part in the race, came to Les Sables-d’Olonne for their preparation and that of their boat in accordance with the Notice of Race, making Port Olona the preparation base for the longest sporting event in the world.

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GGR entrants, three months to go! No room for error as many set sail to the start.

GGR entrants, three months to go! No room for error as many set sail to the start.

Entrants feel the pressure as refit and ocean crossing deadlines loom large.

Capt. Coconut is about to complete a 6-month 14,000-mile solo sail to the start.

South Africans at sea, American and Canadian entries late for an early June transatlantic.

Some GGR yachts are still not launched, but 23 hope to make the start.

On September 4th, Les Sables d’Olonne, the world capital of solo around the world racing, will again host the start of the 2022 Golden Globe Race. Seven entrants on the other side of the world must still sail to the start, while others continue frantic refits.

Skippers can’t just show up on the start day. They have just three months to arrive in Spain on August 6th for the start of the Prologue. (The Host Port will be announced in the next weeks). This will include compulsory safety briefings and independent surveys of the boats and rigs. The Entrants then complete the SITraN Challenge race to Les Sables d’Olonne for a busy fun time at the GGR Les Sables Race Village opening in Port Olona on August 20, 2022.

The clock is ticking louder by the day. This is especially true for overseas entrants. Two Canadian and two American entrants are just about to launch their boat after extensive refits and prepare to sail to Europe. Two South African entrants are setting sail on the 6600-mile voyage north to the start.

They are all feeling the pressure: there is now little room for failure in their boat preparation and crossings. If your boat is not in the water by now, this means you should be rushing!

“The first challenge of the GGR is getting to the start and the biggest is getting to the finish! We currently have 23 entrants and I hope they all make the start” said GGR organiser Don McIntyre “Many entrants face time and money pressure, but also the human element of leaving things to the last minute also kicks in about now. Some are wishing they did more in the years before, but quite a few are well organised too. That will make a difference when the gun goes”

Australian and New Zealanders are the most distant from the start. 2018 GGR Veteran Mark Sinclair (Capt. Coconut) has been at sea solo non-stop from South Australia for 156 days, in his Lello 34. He should landfall in Les Sables d’Olonne around May the 21st finishing his 2018 circumnavigation and ready for the start of his 2022 GGR. He endured four consecutive storms last February when rounding Cape Horn and now has a repaired broken forestay.

Kiwi Graham Dalton was trapped in New Zealand by Covid travel restrictions and has just flown into Les Sables d’Olonne. He has a huge job ahead to complete the refit of Jean Luc Van den Heede’s race winning Rustler 36. Local sailmakers, riggers and engineers are helping, but time is tight! He must then sail the 2000 miles GGR qualifier.

South African entries must cross both the South and North Atlantic Oceans. Jeremy Bagshaw left Cape Town a week ago and Kirsten Neuschäfer will set sail in the next few days for the 6600 miles voyage north.

Both are planning to cross the Equator as far West as they can to replicate the last leg of the last leg of the race to Les Sables d’Olonne, while polishing their celestial navigation skills, expecting to make landfall late June.

The Canadians and Americans need around 30-35 days to complete their Atlantic 3000 /3600-mile crossings to Europe if all goes well.

In Canada, Edward Walentynowicz is behind schedule and will launch late May with a planned departure date 7th of June, going first to the Rustler shipyard in Falmouth for an in-house revision of his “Noah’s Jest”. He is pushing to make the prologue on time!

Gaurav Shinde recently completed the paint Party of “Good Hope” in an elegant grey livery and launched late April in Lake Ontario before crossing. He has a long way to go down the St Laurent River before even reaching the Atlantic. With all new equipment and systems, he hopes it all works!

Further south, American Guy deBoer in Florida just launched his “Spirit” on May 2nd with the help of his team and completed his jury rig test, but his many boat modifications are yet untried. He told us “The date may move a day or two but I expect to set sail on June 1st. You should expect me to arrive in LSO by July 5th. See everyone very soon!”

His neighbour Elliott Smith, the youngest entrant in the race is facing overwhelming odds giving himself until the end of May to set sail and be in Europe on time for the start. Like many entrants he needs to complete his jury rig and emergency steering trials. He still has to purchase the required GGR safety gear and is short on sails but is fuelled by pure passion!

For European and UK entries, being closer does not necessarily mean being ready. Several entrants are rushing to get their boats finished on time. 79-year-old UK Entrant David Scott Cowper was hit by Covid and a shortage of available labour to help his refit. He remains confident of completing it and his 2000-mile solo qualifier just in time.

Finnish entry and 2018 GGR veteran Tapio Lehtinen is heading a double refit in Finland of both his 2022 GGR entry “Asteria”, a Gia 36 and his 2023 Ocean Globe Race entry “Galiana” a Swan 55, at the same time. He will bring both yachts to Les Sables d’Olonne for the start.

Spanish entry Aleix Selles Vidal is completing his refit in the Adriatic and will have to multitask, working on the boat while completing his 4000 solo qualifying mileage for the race. He admits he is behind schedule but insists he will be at the start.

With nearly half of the GGR fleet at sea over the next couple of months, the lead into the next edition of the GGR already promises a few adventures even before the start! The time for talking and refitting is just about over.

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Rescued Golden Globe 2018 sailor Abhilash Tomy re-enters 2022 GGR

Rescued Golden Globe 2018 sailor Abhilash Tomy re-enters 2022 GGR

Indian sailor Abhilash Tomy was an entrant in the 50th Anniversary edition of the Golden Globe, a solo non-stop race around the world which started from Les Sables d’Olonne France on July 1st 2018. He was rescued after 83 days at sea following a complex international effort. The winner of the first 1968 Sunday Times Golden Globe was Englishman Sir Robin Knox Johnston sailing a 32ft timber yacht built in India named SUHAILI. He became the first person ever to solo circumnavigate the globe non-stop after 312 days. Abhilash was sailing an exact replica of Suhail, named “THURIYA” also built in India.

Abhilash, a Navy commander who had previously sailed solo non-stop around the world was running third in the race when an extreme storm deep in the Southern Indian Ocean rolled and dismasted his yacht, severely injuring his back and unable to move his legs. Trapped below, he sent a short text message to race control and turned his EPIRB on. Then all communication was lost.

Half way between Australia and South Africa, the disabled yacht was as far from rescue as anyone could be. Three and a half days later, a French Government fisheries patrol vessel OSIRIS arrived at the scene. In difficult conditions the crew were able to recover Abhilash in a stretcher. He was later transferred to an Indian Navy vessel sent to recover him and two days after arriving in India ttitanium rods were inserted in his spine and 5 vertebrae were fused into one.

“My legs were so badly off that I had to learn to walk again”. Said Abhilash “But I did learn to walk, and then got into a cockpit and got back to Navy flying, and sailing! Now three and a half years later, I am heading back into the same race.”

Today at the Dubai Expo 2020, Abhilash announced his sponsor Bayanat and official entry in the 2022 Golden Globe Race. Bayanat, a G42 company specializing in AI-powered geospatial intelligence, confirmed its sponsorship. “Abhilash will sail in a UAE-registered sailboat aptly named ‘Bayanat’ which will race under the number 71, the year in which the UAE was formed,” their statement said.

The company said that during the race Abhilash would aid in ongoing scientific work, “including the collection of water samples which can be analysed for up to date insight on the presence of microplastics in the world’s oceans”.

In addition, a small section of the yacht will be painted with a special coating which will serve as a reflectance target for satellites, “representing a one-of-a-kind opportunity to collect calibrated data during the race”. This is in keeping with Bayanat’s business, which “provides comprehensive world-class geospatial AI solutions to a growing number of sectors such as defence, environment, energy and resources, smart cities and transportation.”

“WE are all very excited to see Abhilash back in the Golden Globe”. Said Don McIntyre GGR Founder. “He is such a powerful sailor with a huge smile. To see his beautiful yacht destroyed in the last edition was a real shock. He has a huge following around the world so his fans will be celebrating too and it’s clear he has some unfinished business!”

Abhilash has purchased a Rustler 36 in France, and named it “Bayanat” previously raced in the last Golden Globe by Philippe Péché with PRB sponsorship. He has just five months to complete a full refit and sail a 2000 miles solo voyage to qualify for the GGR. He is the last entrant to join this incredible Human adventure that is unlike any other event in the world. This brings the total fleet to 23 sailors from 13 countries.

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PREPARING FOR THE LONGEST SPORTING EVENT IN THE WORLD

PREPARING FOR THE LONGEST SPORTING EVENT IN THE WORLD

A New Course: 4 Compulsory Film Drop Points To Share Their Incredible Adventure

11 adventurers are preparing for the longest sporting event in the world, the Golden Globe Race, in Les Sables d’Olonne on March 9 and 10.

Les Sables d’Olonne Becomes The Training Base For The World’s Longest Sporting Event

The Bay Of Les Sables d’Olonne, One Of The Most Beautiful Bays In The World

 

The Golden Globe Race is a single-handed, non-stop round-the-world race, with no assistance, no GPS and no modern electronics on board. The adventure will start on 4 September 2022.

23 sailors from all over the world will embark on an adventure of a lifetime for more than 200 days – away from the rest of the world, navigating with a sextant only.

Les Sables d’Olonne, home of the Vendée Globe and the Spirit of Adventure, is the training base for the longest sporting event in the world.

This retro round-the-world challenge will have many surprises in store for us. It will be a unique experience with highly motivated competitors who will take part in this legendary event to succeed Jean-Luc Van Den Heede and Sir Robin Knox-Johnston.

Les Sables d’Olonne welcomes all friends of the sea and maritime adventure to one of the most beautiful bays in the world.”

Yannick MOREAU, Mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne and President of the Agglomeration

 

A New Course: 4 Compulsory Film Drop Points To Share Their Incredible Adventure

In the last edition, the competitors had to go around two compulsory rounding marks: Lanzarote and Hobart.
This year, the course has been modified with two additional marks: Cape Town in South Africa and Punta del Este in Uruguay.

The skippers will be able to drop their recorded videos and photos at these four gates without getting in contact with anyone and without docking, allowing them to share their incredible adventure and us to hear their latest stories.

23 Competitors From All Over The World Ready To Fight And Become Part Of The Legend

In 1968-1969, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston won the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, the first solo, non-stop, round-the-world race in history, sailing for 312 days.
In 2018, 50 years later, this legendary adventure was reborn in Les Sables d’Olonne for a second edition with the same navigation aids as available in 1968. Famous French sailor Jean-Luc Van Den Heede won the race in 211 days.

Who will succeed these legends who have inspired generations of sailors? 23 sailors of 13 different nationalities are ready to take up the challenge!

Some returnees from the last edition will take up the challenge again, like Turkish sailor Ertan Beskardes or Finnish sailor Tapio Lehtinen, who finished 5th in the 2018-2019 edition after 322 days at sea. Australian Mark Sinclair, who was forced to stop in 2018, is currently sailing from Australia to France – finishing his one-stop circumnavigation in April this year just to embark again on a new round the world tour with the GGR 2022 in September.

The other entrants will experience the GGR for the first time, but are no less competitive. Most of them have already sailed around the world several times or have participated in the biggest offshore races: Mini Transat, Figaro, Open 60, Clipper 70

Amongst them, Frenchman Damien Guillou will be racing under the banner of PRB, sponsor of two Vendée Globe winning campaigns.

Seven participants must cross at least one ocean to reach Les Sables d’Olonne: An adventure within the adventure. Preparing the boat for a round-the-world competition is already a challenge, but now they have to bring their boats to the right side of the Atlantic to make the start in Les Sables d’Olonne.

This is the case for Elliott Smith (USA), Gaurav Shinde (Canada), Guy deBoer (USA), Jeremy Bagshaw (South Africa), Matthew Wright (Australia), Kirsten Neuschäfer (South Africa) and Mark Sinclair (Australia).

Les Sables d’Olonne Becomes The Training Base For The World’s Longest Sporting Event

11 of the 23 skippers have arrived in Les Sables d’Olonne for briefings and work sessions organised by Don McIntyre to get prepared for this extraordinary adventure.

Boat preparations, rules, safety, mental and physical preparation – nothing is left to chance. The countdown is on in Port Olona.

From now on, it will not be unusual for the people of Les Sables d’Olonne to come across the international adventurers and admire their yachts sailing up the channel.

The Bay Of Les Sables d’Olonne, One Of The Most Beautiful Bays In The World

Many were convinced about it already, but it is now official: Les Sables d’Olonne is one of the “Most Beautiful Bays in the World”. Alongside Halong Bay, San Francisco Bay and Mont Saint-Michel, the Bay of Les Sables d’Olonne is joining a club of cities committed to preserving and enhancing the beauty of nature.

It is a prestigious label obtained after several stages of rigorous selection by the international association of “The Most Beautiful Bays in the World” which brings together some of the most exceptional coastal sites on the planet.

A legendary bay, symbol of the spirit of adventure, with water sports in its DNA. This is where the big events take place: Vendée Arctique, Vendée Globe, Vendée Va’a, French Surfing Championships, Iron Man, Mini Transat.

 

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