Retro yachts sail from Cowes to race around the world

  • By Curtis Lancaster
  • BBC News

image source, Studio Borlenghi / Carlo Boghi translated 9

image caption,

Racers from all over the world sail from Cowes on the Isle of Wight

Two hundred sailors will embark on an eight-month round-the-world race in retro yachts.

Teams from all over the world traveled from Cowes to the Isle of Wight for the Ocean Globe Race.

The 14 yachts have no computers, GPS or other modern technology, and their crews will use sextants for the 27,000-mile journey.

The race will start from the Royal Yachting Squadron start line in Cowes at 13:00 BST.

Participating vessels must be built before 1988. and even the music on board has to come from cassette players.

image source, Aida Valceanu / OGR2023

image caption,

Fourteen yachts, including seven ex-Whitbread yachts, are ready to sail

The first stop of the race will be Cape Town in South Africa.

Ocean Globe Race founder and director Don McIntyre described it as an “epic challenge” and “a uniquely human adventure”.

“Boats race on a handicap system, which means the smallest boat can win,” he added.

image source, Tim Bishop / PPL

image caption,

The final safety checks are carried out by the teams before the race

The British entrant is Maiden, a yacht that made history in 1990 when her all-female crew was the first to sail in the Whitbread race and crossed the finish line second in her class.

The restored 58ft (17m) yacht has a new crew of women, and captain Heather Thomas hopes they can inspire other women.

She said: “I want to show young women around the world what they can do with hard work and determination.”

image source, The Virgo Factor-Kaia Bint Savage

image caption,

in 2023 The crew of the Maiden will be the second all-female team to circumnavigate the globe

The race marks 50 years since the first Whitbread round-the-world race, which was the forerunner of the Ocean Globe Race.

Lookouts from which to see the start are Gurnard, Isle of Wight or Lepe Beach in the New Forest.

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