Please select your home edition
Edition
Auckland On Water Boat Show

Webb Chiles, 72, sixth circumnavigation attempt in 24ft daysailer

by Nancy Knudsen on 26 May 2014
Webb Chiles on "GANNET," earlier this year. Photo Steve Earley steve.earley@verizon.net .. .
Some adventure sailors do so for the fame and glory that success brings. Others do it because the sea is where they love to be. Webb Chiles is in the latter category. At 72 years, and with five circumnavigations already behind him, last week he commenced his sixth circumnavigation attempt.

Not only is this a game attempt, he is doing it in what some would regard as a light racing boat unsuited to such a voyage. His 24ft boat Gannet is a Moore 24, a boat design which has never so far been sailed around the world.

While Webb is known to hard core cruising sailors, he is almost wholly unknown in mainstream news, in spite of the fact that he holds the record for the first American sailor to round Cape Horn solo.

Some of his escapades have been newsworthy, however, including the sinking of his own 36' sloop Resurgam and subsequent 26 hours of floating and swimming to survive. He was not rescued, but carried more than 125 miles by the Gulf Stream before reaching an anchored fishing vessel. He also broke Sir Francis Chichester’s record for the fastest solo circumnavigation in a monohull by more than three weeks.

Webb is also noted for sailing small, simple boats. One of his previous boats, Chidiock Tichborne, an 18’ open yawl,which he sailed west around the world, was a stock British built Drascombe Lugger, an open boat with no deck.



This time he started his journey in San Diego, California, and is headed for Hawaii on his way to New Zealand. From New Zealand he will decide whether to continue in a westerly direction, or head east in the Southern Hemisphere summer to round Cape Horn for the second time.

Not that he would care, but Webb is approaching the record of fabled Japanese sailor Minoru Saito, who, at the age of 76, completed his eighth circumnavigation in 2011.

About Gannet:



The Californian-designed Moore 24 is the first ultra-light displacement class built in the United States.  Moore 24s have often been successfully raced from California to Hawaii, but no one has ever before attempted to circumnavigate in one. It was first designed in 1972, but has always been used primarily for racing and fast daysailing.

You can follow GANNET’s track at http://my.yb.tl/gannet; and learn more about the artist who is sailing the boat at www.inthepresentsea.com.

Hall Spars - BoomBakewell-White Yacht DesignHarken AUS Reflex 660x82

Related Articles

Kids Polarised Sunglasses from Barz Optics
Barz Optics have developed a quality range of junior polarised sunglasses ideal for sailing and fishing. Barz Optics have developed a quality range of junior polarised sunglasses ideal for sailing and fishing. Each pair are supplied with a neoprene case and sunglass retainer.
Posted on 4 Aug
Reducing weight aloft with composite backstays
Reducing weight aloft is one of the most cost effective ways of increasing your boat speed and performance. Reducing weight aloft is one of the most cost effective ways of increasing your boat speed and performance. Every kilogram you take out of the rig is roughly equivalent to 4kg added to the bottom of your keel!
Posted on 26 Jul
Bavaria STYLE 46 Australian Premiere at Sydney International Boat Show
For everyone who appreciates luxury on the water, the STYLE package is now available for the Cruiser 46 and Cruiser 51?. For everyone who appreciates luxury on the water, the STYLE package is now available for the Cruiser 46 and Cruiser 51?. Making the most of your time on board, be it with family or friends, is becoming more important. Yacht owners want certain levels of comfort and an onboard living experience coupled with versatility.
Posted on 26 Jul
What to look for when buying a modern lifejacket
There is no doubt that modern lifejacket design has changed considerably. There is no doubt that modern lifejacket design has changed considerably and one of the biggest drivers of this change has been due to personal ownership. Rather than crew relying on lifejackets being on-board a boat, they want to own their own lifejacket as part of their kit bag.
Posted on 25 Jul
The New Bavaria Cruiser 34 - you won't believe this is a 34' yacht!
The Sydney International Boat Show sees the World Premiere of the Bavaria Cruiser 34 - 2 Cabin version. The Sydney International Boat Show sees the World and Australian Premiere of the Bavaria Cruiser 34 - 2 Cabin version. The new Cruiser 34 offers more space and more comfort than ever before with a bigger cockpit, dual helms and ergonomically designed seating. This is the first time the entry level Bavaria cruiser has been offered in twin helm!
Posted on 19 Jul
Navathome Australia brings RYA Theory to your door
The RYA Cruising Syllabus has been built up over years of best practice development in Sail and Power Boat skippering. The Royal Yachting Association Cruising Syllabus has been built up over years of best practice development in Sail and Power Boat skippering. Split into a theory and practical syllabus the training modules take you in steps from a Start Yachting orientation through to Yachtmaster for either power or sail.
Posted on 5 Jul
Free $US3,000 Carbon Vang with SouthernFurl boom orders in July
Southern Spars is giving a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July Southern Spars is giving away a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with all of their SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July. Carbon gas vangs make a great addition to the furling boom package, though if you’d prefer to keep your existing one, Southern Spars will offer you a 5% discount on the price of your boom instead.
Posted on 29 Jun
Newport Bermuda Race - High Noon takes honours
As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, the powerful 100-foot grand prix Comanche, to the surprise of many they were led by an unusual boat and crew. High Noon, at 41 feet, is fully 59 feet shorter than Comanche and tens of feet shorter than many other entries.
Posted on 22 Jun
Platino recovery - Family confirms that tug has made rendezvous
Reports in social media say a salvage tug has made a rendezvous with the Platino earlier than expected. Reports in social media by family and friends of Nick Saull, the crew member killed during a catastrophic incident abroad the 66ft yacht Platino say the salvage tug which left on Tuesday night has made the rendezvous earlier than expected. The Facebook report says the tug, Sea Pelican, arrived on Friday morning, the weather in the area has eased and with a more favorable outlook.
Posted on 16 Jun
Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron to ban bottled water
Approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. The RQYS Management Committee has confirmed that approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. This will place the club as a leader in environmental impact management in Australia and around the world. The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club earlier this year did likewise. Who’s next?
Posted on 16 Jun