Please select your home edition
Selden 2020 - LEADERBOARD

Looking forward to the Golden Globe Race 2022

by David Schmidt 16 Aug 2022 08:00 PDT August 16, 2022
15 Golden Globe Race 2022 yachts on the same start line, finally! © Paco Hispán Miranda

If you've been reading this newsletter for a while, you have probably realized that Sail-World has a huge soft spot for adventure racing. Don't get us wrong, we also love windward-leewards, triangles, bay tours, and distance racing, of course, but there's something especially cool about events that shift the emphasis away from equipment and technology and instead place it on old-fashioned sailing and seamanship skills, and the experience of putting oneself out there.

While events such as The Ocean Race (née the Volvo Ocean Race) certainly fall into this category, especially when teams were racing One Design VO65s, that involved high-dollar corporate sponsorship. Strip that away, and the conversation quickly turns to events like the Race to Alaska, the Worrell 1000, and the various archipelago raids.

Then there's the Golden Globe Race 2022, which earns the distinction of being the ultimate slow-boat adventure race.

For anyone who isn't already familiar with this retro race, some backstory might be helpful. On March 17, 1968, the Sunday Times published an announcement for a nonstop, singlehanded sailboat race that would take skippers on a course around the world, a feat that (on the cusp of the moon landing) still hadn't been achieved. Some now-famous names stepped up: Bill King, Chay Blythe, John Ridgeway, Bernard Moitessier, Francis Chichester, and a young man named Robin Knox-Johnston.

Tragedy unfurled, in the form of a disturbed man named Donald Crowhurst, who transmitted false position reports from his trimaran in the hopes of pulling off a hoax, but was instead lost at sea. Legends were minted, for example when Joshua supposedly told Moitessier that if he gave her wind, she would give him miles.

And a young man, soon to be called "Sir Robin", returned home a hero.

Flash forward 50 years, and the race's spirit was resurrected in the form of the Golden Globe Race 2018. Its founder and race chairman, Australian adventurer and circumnavigator Don McIntyre, wanted to create a race that leveraged seamanship, adventure sailing, and old-fashioned nautical bronze, rather than creating another contest for high-tech boats.

To that end, he included some interesting provisions in the rules, namely that sailors would be restricted to the kinds of technologies that were available during the original Golden Globe Race. This means no electronic navigation, and it means racing aboard production-series yachts that were designed prior to 1988, measure between 32 and 36 feet, LOA, and carry full keels.

As the race's motto proclaims, "sailing like it's 1968".

While plenty in the sailing world were quick to dismiss the GGR 2018 as a nostalgia cruise, the race drew many qualified sailors and plenty of drama ensued, including multiple dismastings and rescues.

While the fastest Vendée Globe sailors have circumnavigated the planet in just over 74 days using IMOCA 60 monohulls, the winner of the GGR 2018, Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, won with a finishing time of 211 days, 23 hours, 12 minutes and 19 seconds. Impressively, Mark Slats, who finished one spot astern of Van Den Heede, posted a corrected finishing time (which included a 36-hour penalty) of 216 days, 18 minutes and 30 seconds.

The final finisher, Mark Sinclair, finished the race on May 28, 2022 (you read that right). That's a hell of an adventure!

The next edition of the Golden Globe Race is set to begin on September 4, 2022. North American interests are being represented by Guy de Boer (USA), Elliott Smith (USA), Doug Dean (USA), Gaurav Shinde (CAN), and Edward Walentynowicz (CAN). In total, 32 skippers will be on the September 4 starting line.

While the GGR 2022 doesn't officially begin for a couple of weeks, the wheels of motion are already turning. The fleet assembled in Gijon, Spain, in early August for the SITraN Challenge, which is a friendly, no-rules 240-nautical mile race to Sables d'Olonne, France, that began on Sunday, August 14. Once in France, skippers will have roughly two and a half weeks to get ready for a slow-but-high-stakes race around the planet.

Sail-World wishes all GGR 2022 entrants good luck in the SITraN Challenge, in their build up to the start of the GGR 2022, and with their upcoming circumnavigation adventure.

May the four winds blow you safely home,
David Schmidt

Related Articles

The armchair navigator - imagining life at sea
What does it feel like during The Ocean Race? As the 2023 edition of The Ocean Race fleets tears up the offshore miles separating Cabo Verde from Cape Town, I'll admit that I often find myself daydreaming about what it would be like to foil (or semi-foil) across a wide swath of big blue. Posted today at 4:00 pm
New Allen blocks at boot Düsseldorf 2023
We speak to Ben Harden about the latest in the range, including the mighty TiiTAN We speak to Ben Harden at boot Düsseldorf 2023 about the new products from Allen, including the redesigned 40mm range, the deck organiser range, the High Roller block range, and the mighty TiiTAN. Posted today at 10:42 am
All vessels great and small
January is a great time 'Down Under': Loads of annual regattas for coveted titles January is such a great time 'Down Under': A load of annual regattas for coveted Australian Championships, with many very much steeped in a grand history, and often a World title or two are in there, as well. Posted on 29 Jan
First look at boot: Peacoq foiling doublehander
Video interview with Patrick Billot, the CEO and Founer of Foily Mark Jardine, Managing Editor of and, talks to Patrick Billot, the CEO and Founer of Foily, about the foiling Peacoq dinghy at boot Düsseldorf 2023. Posted on 26 Jan
First look at boot: The Tiwal 3R
We speak to Emmanuel Bertrand about the revolutionary inflatable dinghy Inflatables and their use in watersports have come a long way, with inflatable stand up paddle boards and canoes now commonplace. The rigidity though for a performance dinghy has though been a challenge, but the Tiwal 3R addresses that. Posted on 26 Jan
What have we learned from The Ocean Race Leg 1?
How the latest generation of IMOCAs stack up against each other As I outlined a fortnight ago, I was concerned about The Ocean Race, and whether - 50 years on from the first Whitbread - a fully crewed, multi-stopover round the world race in the latest cutting-edge foiling machines was relevant. Posted on 23 Jan
TOR begins, SailGP update, RORC Transatlantic Race
David Schmidt looks at the racing reports relevant to North America Sustained atmospheric rivers may have been pounding the U.S. West Coast for weeks, but things were considerably drier and sunnier this weekend in Alicante, Spain, where the first offshore legs of the 2023 edition of The Ocean Race began on Sunday. Posted on 17 Jan
505 Midwinter Championship interview
We talk with Ethan Bixby about the 2023 505 Midwinter Championship Sail-World checked in with Ethan Bixby, event chair of this year's 505 Midwinter Championship, via email, to learn more about this exciting One Design regatta. Posted on 17 Jan
“Could have. Might have…
…but second still feels pretty good. Epic Hobart.” So read my message from Lee Condell. ...but second still feels pretty good. Epic Hobart.” This was the message Lee Condell sent me after he and Lincoln Dews arrived aboard Sun Fast Racing. Posted on 15 Jan
Can your Grandma use FaceTime?
Perhaps not the most nautical of headlines, but it is definitely of the time... Perhaps not the most nautical of headlines, but it is definitely of the time, which is kind of the point with Alloy Boats. Posted on 13 Jan
Rooster 2020 - Impact BA - FOOTERMarine Resources 2022 Salary Survey FOOTERArmstrong-A-Wing-728x90 gif BOTTOM