GOLDEN GLOBE RACE FACTS
What: A non-stop 30,000mile solo race around the world, starting and finishing in Les Sables d’olonne.
Who: 18 skippers, ranging from 28-year-old Briton Suzy Goodall, taking part in her first round the world race, to 73-year-old Jean-luc van den Heede, who has completed five circumnavigations.
The race has attracted yachtsmen such as Philippe Péché, a pillar of the Breton ocean racing community who has twice won the Jules Verne Trophy with Bruno Peyron and raced alongside skippers such as Tabarly, Desjoyeaux, and Macarthur. But it has also drawn entrants like Abhilash Tomy, who became the first Indian sailor to circumnavigate the planet just five years ago.
The boats: must be production boats of 32-36ft LOA, designed before 1988, and must have a full-length keel with rudder attached to their trailing edge.
The technology: original tech only – no GPS, satellite phone, electronic instruments or autopilots, or watermakers. A pack containing satellite phone and GPS must only be opened in an emergency. Some designs have proved especially popular – for example, there are seven Rustler 36s taking part.
When: started on 1 July. Most finishers are expected to take around 300 days, so should be returning some time in April 2019.