Sir Robin Knox-Johnston is not about to give up on solo ocean racing. At age 75, he has announced plans to sail in the Route de Rhum Race in November on his Open 60, Grey Power. Knox-Johnston, founder of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race and first ever man to sail solo, non-stop around the world in 1968/69, will compete in the tenth anniversary edition of the 3,500-mile Transatlantic race from St Malo, France to Guadeloupe. Starting date for the race is November 2, 2014.
From the press release: Knox-Johnston last did this race in 1982 in his 70-foot catamaran Olympus, better known as Sea Falcon. He is the oldest participant entered so far at the age of 75. Asked why he had chosen a solo Transatlantic Race at the age of 75, Knox-Johnston responded: “Participating in the 2013 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Race reminded me how much I enjoy the excitement of an ocean race. Solo sailing is where I feel most at home – no one else can benefit you or let you down – it is all in my hands. The Route de Rhum is one of the classics – it is a very well-run race.”
The race sees sailors cross the Bay of Biscay late in the year in November before reaching the kinder, yet still squally climes of the trade wind belt before finishing in the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe.