Continuing on the theme of looking back, here’s a story from Brian Hancock about the start of the Vendee that we received a bit after the start. A little weekend reading for you…
If you have never been to a Vendée Globe start, you have missed out on one of life’s great experiences, especially, but not only, if you are a sailor. It’s a truly amazing experience and if you are someone who loves the sport and struggles to understand why the masses don’t, go to France. Your heart will be warmed. The scene on the docks the weeks leading up to the start was nothing short of amazing. Ten of thousands of ‘ordinary’ people standing in long lines (in the pouring rain) for an opportunity to get close to the boats and to come face to face with a skipper. The skippers have rock-star status, and in my humble opinion, it’s well deserved. The top sailors are amazing athletes sailing space-age craft around the globe, alone. You try it. You try hoisting the massive mainsail, or worse yet, deal with the sail after a crash gybe. You try sleeping when the boat is hurtling along at 35 knots. It’s impossible to imagine how they do it.
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