Imagine sailing around the world by yourself with no modern navigation systems or technology to help guide your expedition. If you’re wondering who would do such a thing and why, we’ll tell you! Last July, eighteen ordinary people (well, experienced sailors actually) began the Golden Globe Race, a 30,000-mile sailing race around the world that starts from and ends in Les Sables-D’Olonne, France. While most sailing races, like the America’s Cup, involve some of the most modern sailing vessels, experienced sailing crews, and onshore help, the Golden Globe Race is a solo race and one that emphasizes the “Golden Age” of racing—a time when it was just a sailor, their boat, and the sea. On July 1st, 2018, eighteen sailors set off to sail around the world, but only one completed the race. Two hundred and twelve days later, seventy-three-year old French veteran sailor Jean-Luc van den Heede completed and won the race.
Interesting Fact: Although this was the first time Jean Luc van den Heede won the Golden Globe Race, it wasn’t his first time circumnavigating the globe on a boat. In fact, he had sailed around the world five times before winning this race!