That describes Rich Wilson as well as his Open 60! Today, the 58 year old Vendée Globe skipper became only the second American to complete the toughest of all round the world races. He came in ninth, in a race that saw the highest ever number of retirements, a tribute to his seamanship skills, determination, and planning; he finished in just over 121 days.
Like most of us Americans, Rich had plenty to say after he landed in Les Sables d’Olonnes, not the least of which was about the non-French contingent! “It’s good that there are 4 British sailors that finished the race, Steve, Sam, Dee and Brian; still that front pack of boats that went down the Atlantic and across the Indian ocean was all French except for Mike Golding, Bernard Stamm and Dominique were catching up, but so many French sailors and they’re incredible at how fast they can go, and for Michel Desjoyeaux to catch up, incredible at how fast he can go. I think it’s very good for the class and race that there was this group of English sailors, because it’s always been just French at the top, and also let’s not forget that Bernard and Dominique, in particular when Dominique had his problem with his keel and had to retire I sent him an email to say that the listing of boats would not be the same without Temenos II in there, because for me the new generation of boats, as Mich Desj told me, has 30 percent more power than the previous generation, and much has been made of my age, but Dom is only 3 years younger than me and he’s sailing one of these powerful boats and he’s incredible.” Rich had plenty more to say here.