Please select your home edition
Edition
Barz Optics - Melanin Lenses

Velux 5 Oceans 2010-11 concludes

by Velux 5 Oceans on 1 Jun 2011
The four skippers: Chris Stanmore-Major, Derek Hatfield, Gutek and Brad Van Liew at the end of the Velux 5 Oceans, in La Rochelle, France today onEdition © http://www.onEdition.com
Velux 5 Oceans 2010-11 is the longest single handed event in the world. After nine months the racing has finished.

It was an epic battle full of thrills and spills, highs and lows, drama and action – but like all good things it must come to an end.

The arrivals of solo sailors Derek Hatfield and Zbigniew ‘Gutek’ Gutkowski into the French port of La Rochelle on Sunday marked the end of racing in the 2010-11 edition of the Velux 5 Oceans, following the arrivals of winner Brad Van Liew and Chris Stanmore-Major in the days previously.

It was the eighth edition of the race, which started out life as the BOC Challenge in 1982, making it the world’s longest-running regularly-held race – and what a race it was. Despite a small fleet of just five ocean-going Eco 60 class yachts setting sail from La Rochelle back in October, the 30,000-mile race provided some of the closest and most exciting racing seen in solo sailing in recent times.

Five skippers from five countries spread far and wide took on the race, known as The Ultimate Solo Challenge. They were five totally different personalities, each bringing their own traits to the race, helping to mould it into the great success it was.

From boat breakages to one of the closest ever finish in solo ocean racing history – just 40 seconds separating Gutek and Chris after 7,000 miles at sea – the Velux 5 Oceans had it all. It saw Brad become the first American ever to sail solo around the world three times, as well as the only sailor in the history of the race to win with clean sweeps twice.

Gutek became the first Pole to race solo around the world, and his and Chris’ names were added to the history books as the 182nd and 183rd people ever to sail solo around the world, an exclusive club epitomised by race chairman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston back in 1969.

It also saw the introduction of the Eco 60 class, premiered in the event as a sustainable vision for solo ocean racing. The Eco 60 class is for Open 60s built before 2003, launched as an affordable and more sustainable alternative to the big budget campaigns that have dominated solo ocean racing in recent years. The class is governed by rules and regulations designed to attract skippers with limited budgets through reduced running costs, as well as encouraging positive environmental practices.

The birth of the Eco 60 class helped the Velux 5 Oceans set a precedent in solo ocean racing – never before have such a high percentage of entries completed the race, with four out of the five skippers making it successfully back to La Rochelle to complete their singlehanded voyages around the world.

Sir Robin said: 'There has never been a singlehanded round the world race where 80 per cent of the boats finished. All the boats are in Europe, none of them broke a mast, none had serious damage – even the fifth boat that was forced to retire is back in Europe, as time was the key factor that forced the withdrawal of Christophe Bullens. This is a record. It says a great deal for the sailors themselves and it says a great deal for the Eco 60 class.

'Brad performed brilliantly and was always the one to beat. The excitement was behind him because the positions were always changing, especially towards the end of the race. It’s been a very exciting race and the last leg was one of the most exciting. These guys have proved they are good sailors, they’re very competitive, and they can get a boat round the world safely. That is the highest praise you can give a sailor.'

The final prize-giving will be held at the Velux House by the Bassin des Chalutiers in La Rochelle on Friday at 6pm local time. There, Brad will be crowned winner of the 2010/11 Velux 5 Oceans, and one last celebration of this edition will be held.

Ocean Sprint 5 finishing times:
Skipper / distance to finish (nm) / distance to next boat (nm) / distance covered in last 24 hours (nm) / average speed in last 24 hours (kts)
Brad Van Liew, Le Pingouin: finished 27.05.11 in 12 days 23hrs and 52 minutes
Chris Stanmore-Major, Spartan: finished 28.05.11 in 13 days 14hrs and 06 minutes
Zbigniew Gutkowski, Operon Racing: finished 28.05.11 in 13 days 18hrs and 07 minutes
Derek Hatfield, Active House: finished 29.05.11 in 14 days 12hrs and 07 Velux 5 Oceans website
Kilwell - 1NaiadPacific Sailing School 660x82 1

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
The importance of being Alive
Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, the team have lined up for a lot of things, won plenty and nabbed a record, as well. She’s presently in a yard in the Philippines having a minor refit in readiness for the Australian season. It will commence with the upcoming Brisbane to Keppel and then head sharply into this year’s Hobart.
Posted on 10 May
Hoisted on their own petard
Now it was not that long ago that we wondered if there were some genuinely Shakespearean elements beginning to appear... Now it was not that long ago that we wondered if there were some genuinely Shakespearean elements beginning to appear in World Sailing’s premier event, the Sailing World Cup. In that time, a flurry of material has espoused all manner of joyous points including travel grants and prize money. That’s terrific and the hope is that somehow this will overcome the tyranny of distance for Melbourne
Posted on 9 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
So, thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 4 May