The Golden Globe Race: A Madmen’s Journey

  • Abhilash Tomy, a former Commander in the Indian Navy, has completed a solo round of the globe by coming second in the Golden Globe Race (GGR) in 2022.
  • He set this record under much more difficult conditions than his previous record-breaking achievement of sailing around the world solo and unassisted in 2013.

What exactly is the Golden Globe Race?

  • The Golden Globe Race is a nonstop, solo, unassisted yacht race around the world that began in 1968-69.
  • The race requires competitors to use vessels built to premodern criteria and to rely solely on sextants and paper charts.
  • Satellite phones are available for relatively limited use, and modern navigational equipment is not permitted.
  • The ship would take a predetermined course around the three main capes.

His reappearance at GGR

  • Following several injuries, Tomy began looking for sponsors and boats to participate in GGR-2022 in 2021.
  • He declared his participation in the Bayanat race in March 2022, which is sponsored by a UAE-based company specialising in geospatial artificial intelligence.
  • However, only three weeks before the race, the boat collided with a ship, necessitating extensive repairs.

The significance of his accomplishment

  • Only three of the 11 competitors in the GGR-2022 race finished, with Kirsten Neuschafer becoming the first woman to win a solo around-the-world yacht race.
  • Tomy’s boat was the most ‘repaired’ in the race, and it was all done by the sailor himself, despite the unthinkable sea conditions and lack of sleep.
  • In the end, Tomy finished second after Neuschafer to become the first Asian to complete the 30,000-mile GGR.
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