While the non-stop Vendee Globe race has become the premier solo around the world race, an older solo around the world race with multiple stops is still around and is slated to start on Oct. 22 in Bilbao, Spain.
Originally called the BOC (for its then sponsor the British Oxygen Corporation), it later was known as Around Alone. Clipper Ventures, owned by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (in picture), is the current organizer of the race and the sponsor for the 2006 version is the French window manufacturer Velux. Thus, the race is now called the Velux 5 Oceans.
Eight skippers will participate in the 2006 even, including Knox-Johnston, who will be 67 at the start of the race. Others include American Tim Troy; New Zealander Grant Dalton; Swiss Bernard Stamm, previous winner of Around Alone; British sailors Mike Golding and Alex Thomson, Japanese Kojiro Shiraishi, and Spanish/Basque sailor Unai Basurko â€“ Pakea.
While previous versions of the race have had as many as four stopping points, this version will have only two: Perth, Australia and Norfolk, Virginia.