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30 for 30 Shorts: Ted Turner’s Greatest Race

Published on June 3rd, 2015

When Ted Turner entered his yacht Tenacious in the famed Fastnet Race in 1979, he did not need to prove himself. He had already started a television network, purchased the Atlanta Braves and Hawks, won the 1977 America’s Cup, and, to this day, is the only 4-time US Yachtsman of the Year award recipient.

The 605 mile ocean race starts on the south coast of England, racing over to Fastnet Rock off the Irish Coast and returns to Plymouth. Overall victory had eluded Turner in the past but not this time. However, the achievement would come amid a historic storm that pounded the 303 boat fleet and led to 15 lives lost during the night of the storm.

In “Ted Turner’s Greatest Race,” an ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 Short directed by Gary Jobson, Turner and many of his crew members relive that harrowing experience amid riveting footage and photographs.

Background: “Ted Turner’s Greatest Race” director Gary Jobson is a world class sailor, television commentator and author based in Annapolis, Maryland. He is a Vice President of the International Sailing Federation. Gary has authored 19 sailing books and is Editor at Large of Sailing World and Cruising World magazines.

ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 Shorts series is artfully crafted by Blue Moon. “Ted Turner’s Greatest Race” premiered June 3, 2015 on Grantland. Previous films from the series can be viewed at espn.com/30for30/shorts.

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