Dateline Paris 14th December 2017: The organisers of the 2018 Golden Globe Race (GGR) today met with the full board of the French Federation de Voile (FFV) to discuss all aspects of the organisation, operation and safety/security considerations for the Race, starting from Les Sables d’Olonne on July 1st 2018.
Race Chairman Don McIntyre reports: “Discussions were cordial and very productive. It was agreed at an early stage of the meeting that all participants in the room have sailing at heart and hold great respect for the spirit and essence of the original Golden Globe Race as the foundation for all current around the world solo sailing.
“The GGR organisers respect the FFV’s position and were happy for the opportunity to present our case that serious and professional consideration has been given to producing responsible safety, security and risk minimisation for this challenging adventure to recreate the original 1968 Golden Globe.”
The FFV also explained that they must work within current legislative requirements of both the French Government and World Sailing. They suggest that the 2018 Golden Globe may be more of an adventure and maritime event than a true yacht race. In principle, the FFV is not against the event, understand that the 2018 Golden Globe Race is recreating history, and want to promote the heritage of solo sailing.
The FFV will asses the new amendments to the Notice of Race that the GGR organisers presented at the meeting and will make a statement on their position early in the new year.
GGR skipper Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, a five-time solo circumnavigator who also attended the meeting was equally positive. “Discussions happened in a calm atmosphere of cordiality and I am delighted. The FFV understood that the GGR was first and foremost an adventure that will comply with International anti-collision rules but will not apply regulations specific to regattas. They agreed that we would leave 'In the footsteps of History'. The FFV will take a position either to be neutral or against the Race early in January, but without any desire to prevent us from starting the Race.”
The Race in numbers
• The course: 30,000 miles with four rendezvous gates
• 23 entrants (Max entry list is 30)
• Competitors represent 14 countries
• America (3) Australia (2) Brazil (1) Britain (3) Estonia (1) Finland (1) France (5) Ireland (1) India (1) Italy (1) Netherlands (1) Norway (1) Palestine (1) Russia (1)
• Oldest competitor: Jean-Luc van den Heede (FRA) 73.
• Youngest competitors: aged 28: Roy Hubbard (USA) and Susie Goodall (GBR)