Golden Globe: By the sun and the stars
Published on July 10th, 2018
(July 10, 2018; Day 10) – The 2018 Golden Globe Race started from Les Sables d’Olonne on July 1 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first such race – the Sunday Times Golden Globe solo non-stop round the world race in 1968-69.
To keep the race affordable and in theme, the skippers are restricted to using the same type of yachts and equipment as the first edition. That means sextant navigation, and considering there are several checkpoints along the course, completing the course is going to take old school skill.
But sextants require clear skies, and that’s been lacking as the fleet descends along the Moroccan coastline toward their first mark off the south end of Lanzarote, the most easterly of the Canary Islands Most entrants have not had a sextant sight for a few days so they will rely on their compass and logs to maintain a dead reckoning position.
The good news is the islands are high so they will see them from quite a distance. The buoy off Marina Rubicon is at the far end of the island, and they must pass between it and the shore. They can approach it from either side of the island, and depending on their error factor, this option could prove significant.
The requirement of this checkpoint is for safety but also is a drop point for film and correspondence, and to give the opportunity for interviews as the skippers sail along. French skipper Philippe Péché and his Rustler 36 PRB is expected to be the first to arrive on July 12.
The 2018 Golden Globe Race started from Les Sables d’Olonne on Sunday July 1, 2018. The event marks the 50th anniversary of the Sunday Times Golden Globe solo non-stop round the world Race in 1968-69 when rules then allowed competitors to start from ports in northern France or UK between June 1st and October 31st.
A notable twist to 2018 Golden Globe Race format is how entrants are restricted to using the same type of yachts and equipment that were available in that first race, with the premise being to keep the race within financial reach of every dreamer.
The rules allow for one breach of the strict solo, non-stop un-assisted circumnavigation without the aid of modern electronic navigation aids regulations that make this Race unique. However, those that do gain assistance move down to the Chichester Class as if, like Sir Francis Chichester in 1966-67, they have made one stop during their solo circumnavigation.
Those who breach the rules for a second time are deemed to have retired from the GGR Event and the organisers have no responsibility or obligation to them.