Sunday, March 15, 2009

Rich Wilson finishes 9th in Vendee Globe!

Only the second American to ever finish the Vendee Globe solo around the world race, Rich Wilson just recently finished in a very respectable 9th place! Considering over 60% of the starting fleet didn't finish, this is quite an accomplishment. Rich has another bragging point, the fact that he is the oldest competitor at 58yrs old! Way to go Rich!
Here is the link to the video of him finishing.

Did you know that Les Sables D'olonne - the starting and ending point for the Vendee Globe - is where Beneteau's corporate headquarters are? The French do have an incredible sailing history...

In theory, the Vendée Globe is an utterly simple affair. Its fundamental principles come down to a few sentences, compared to which even the roughest logbook would seem sophisticated. A sailing race around the world, for singlehanders, without any stopover. That’s it. In theory at least, because beyond these words start great stories.

Official supplier of legends since 1989, this race has impressed the maritime world and the public in general, to the point where even the strongest superlatives seem unable to define it. The sea also has its mythical summit, created 15 years ago by a sailor, two times winner around the world (BOC Challenge, with stopovers), who refused to rest on his laurels.

Philippe Jeantot wished to go further, to give a new dimension to the world of maritime adventure… “Time, he wrote, is a necessary factor to attain perfect harmony with one’s sailboat. We had to forget about stopping. A round-the-world race, without stopovers or assistance, such were the conditions to reach the desired communion. For the first edition, we set off towards the unknown. None of the 13 sailors who crossed the starting line in 1989 had the experience of a solo journey exceeding 100 days” *.

* Taken from the foreword of the book « Le Vendée Globe, 1989 – 2001, histoire d’un mythe », François Mousis & Serge Messager, Editions des Vignes.

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