Golden Globe Race: Steady Pace
Published on January 17th, 2019
(January 17, 2019; Day 201) – There are less than 1500 miles to the finish of this edition of the Golden Globe Race, with a tight race between the leader, France’s Jean-Luc Van Den Heede and Dutchman Mark Slats. At 20:00 UTC today, Slats is maintaining the distance between him and the leader, about 20 nautical miles.
In the past 24 hours, Slats sailed 86 nm, keeping pace with Van Den Heede, who has ticked 86 nm off his distance to the finish in Les Sables d’Olonne. The next closest, Uku Randmaa is over 3000 miles behind Slats.
Van Den Heede and Slats face unstable weather in about four days that may offer opportunities and challenges for the leaders.
The 2018 Golden Globe Race started for 17 skippers from Les Sables d’Olonne on Sunday July 1, 2018, with the inaugural solo non-stop around the world yacht race expected to take 9-10 months to complete.
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 the 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 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.