Falmouth celebrates the 50th anniversary of Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s departure at the start of the 1968 Sunday Times Golden Globe Race.

click on IMAGES to download hi-res files
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston at the helm of his famous yacht SUHAILI after the start of the GGR SITRaN Challenge Race to Les Sables d'Olonne France
SUHAILI in full sail
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston greeted by the Mayor of Falmouth Cllr Grenville Chappell on arrival in Falmouth

Golden moment... Sir Robin Knox-Johnston resampling his first meal of steak and chips served at the Chain Locker Pub Falmouth 50 years before, with the Guinness barometer mounted on the wall behind.
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston fires the start canon from SUHAILI to set the 2018 Golden Globe Race fleet off to Les Sables d'Olonne
Chart of the 2018 Golden Globe Race course around the world.

Start of the GGR SITRaN Challenge race from Falmouth to Les Sables d'Olonne, France.
Mark Sinclair's Australian entry COCONUT (88) gets a head start on Uku Randmaa's Estonian yacht ONE & ALL

 Uku Randmaa's Estonian yacht ONE & ALL leads Susie Goodall's DHL STARLIGHT at the start of the SITRaN Challenge race


Sir Robin Knox-Johnston's original yacht SUHAILI leads Sir Francis Chichester's historic yacht GIPSY MOTH IV through the 200-strong fleet of well-wishers celebrating the 50th anniversary of Sir Robin's departure from Falmouth to become the first man to sail solo non-stop around the world. 

Dateline Falmouth UK: 14th June 2018

Fifty years to the day after Sir Robin Knox-Johnston set out from Falmouth UK in his rugged 32ft yacht Suhaili to become the first man to sail solo non-stop around the Globe, the British master mariner returned to lead a celebratory parade of sail around the harbour. Watched by visitors on every headland, the 200-strong armada of sail criss-crossed between Falmouth and St Mawes before Sir Robin set up a start line between Suhaili and Sir Francis Chichester’s equally famous yacht Gipsy Moth IV and fired the canon to set the 17-strong fleet of 2018 Golden Globe Race yachts on their way to Les Sables d’Olonne for the start of this 50th anniversary solo circumnavigation on Sunday July 1st.

The Suhaili Parade of Sail was the culmination of a 3-day festival involving Suhaili, Gipsy Moth IV, the replica fleet of Golden Globe Race yachts and vessels from around the UK and Europe which had gathered in Falmouth to honour Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s achievement in the original Sunday Times Golden Globe Race back in 1968/69.

The Mayor of Falmouth, Cllr Grenville Chappell said: “It’s amazing to think it was 50 years ago - it seems only yesterday - that Falmouth welcomed Sir Robin Knox-Johnston back into port after his incredible and historic sailing achievement, one that captured the hearts and minds of millions of people around the world. His exploits then and subsequent, have inspired many across the UK and beyond to get out on the water, take up sailing or indeed undertake their own adventures. It certainly made an indelible mark on Falmouth’s community and we are thrilled to see Sir Robin and his legendary yacht Suhaili back in town. We’re delighted to be the host port for the Suhaili 50 Falmouth Parade of Sail jamboree. Our community has come together so well to assist, so a particular thank you to Falmouth Town Council, Falmouth BID, Falmouth Harbour Commissioners, Royal Cornwall Yacht Club, St Mawes Sailing Club and St Austell Brewery for their support.”

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston said: “It is wonderful to be back in Falmouth and to receive such a warm welcome. Everyone has been very kind. This week’s celebrations have brought back so many memories.”

One of those memories is of a barometer, ‘borrowed’ off a pub wall before Sir Robin set out on his solo first which he used to monitor the changing weather conditions during his 312 day voyage. The original was later stolen from his yacht but Sir Robin returned with a replica of that faithful 'A Lovely day for a Guinness' branded barometer to present to the Chain Locker Pub where he stayed 50 years ago before his departure and on his return.

And to mark his return to this famous harbour-side hostelry, staff served Sir Robin with the same meal of steak and chips followed by lemon meringue pie he had ordered when he first returned to Falmouth on 22nd April 1969.

First of the 2018 Golden Globe Race yachts to cross the line at the start of the SITRaN Challenge race to Les Sables d’Olonne was Tapio Lehtinen’s Finnish yacht Asterisk closely followed by 72-year old Jean-Luc Van Den Heede’s French entry Matmut and the two bright orange painted entrants Mark Sinclair’s Australian yacht Coconut and Istvan Koper’s USA/Hungarian entry Puffin.

Palestinian skipper Nabil Amra, who has still to complete his 1,000 mile solo proving trial, set out later in the day and must sail a further 300 solo distance once he arrives at the French port in order to qualify for the Race.

The first boats are expected to finish in Les Sables d’Olonne, France late on Saturday.

Click here to download aerial footage of the Suhaili Parade of Sail - credit: 3deep Aerial

GGR Programme in Les Sables d’Olonne June 16 – July 1st

The GGR Race Village will open each day from 10:00am to 8:00pm and until 02:00 on Fridays and Saturdays

The GGR Village in Les Sables d'Olonne  open from June 16 - July 1

Visitors will find the GGR yachts and skippers on the Vendée Globe pontoons, and admire the historic solo yachts – Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s Suhaili, Bernard Moitessier’s Joshua and Sir Francis Chichester’s Gipsy Moth IV, together with Eric Tabarly’s Pen Duick III and Pen Duick VI. There is something for all ages: Learn to navigate with the stars and instruments of the past, attend conferences, interviews and demonstrations, participate in workshops and boat baptisms, and the conviviality of the Bar Guinguette during evening concerts
The Race Village is open to the public from June 16 to 30, and is free of charge. Activities are planned each day and entertainment specifically for children will take place on:
Wednesdays 10:00 to 12:00 and 15:00 to 17:00
Saturday 10:00 to 12:00 and 14:30 to 17:30
Sundays 16:00 to 17:00

Click here for full programme of events


Details of skippers and their yachts

Click Here to view skipper profiles and pictures.

Click Here to download the Boat Stats 

Click Here to download Skipper stats 


Press Registration

To register for regular press updates on on the 2018 Golden Globe Race Click Here

Copyright free images of competitors and their yachts, and copyright reserved historic images of solo sailing pioneers and the original Sunday Times Golden Globe Race are managed by PPL Photo Agency and available online to search/download in hi.res. To preview the images follow these links

To view lightbox of copyright free Golden Globe Race images, Click Here

To view  lightbox of copyright reserved historic solo sailing pioneers, Click Here 

To access the high res images you must first register with PPL Media Click here

Please allow 24 hours for accreditation to be confirmed

For further information contact: Barry Pickthall - GGR Media Coordinator 

barry@goldengloberace.com +44 (0)7768 395719



Published by:
Forward this email to a friend.
Subscribe to this list here.
Powered by CovariMail.