The sight of the six 35m extreme multihulls screaming off down the Atlantic at the start of the Arkea Ultim Challenge solo round the world race from Brest, France, provides a timely reminder for sailing enthusiasts everywhere to nominate their favourite Cape Horner for the 2024 Cape Horn Hall of Fame awards.

There are some big names in the hat already, including 2023 Golden Globe Race winner Kirsten Neuschäfer,the first woman to win any round the world race, together with fellow circumnavigators Paul Cayard and the late Bill Pinkney from the USA, Frenchmen Loïck Peyron and his brother Bruno, and Russian adventurer Fyodor Konyukhov who holds the record for sailing around Antarctica.

Organised by the International Association of Cape Horners, public nominations close on 30 April. That is time enough to include the winner of the Ultim Challenge, for the solo non-stop circumnavigation record these six French sailors are chasing is, just 40 days, set by Francis Joyon in the French maxi trimaran IDEC back in 2017 –  an average speed of 21.96 knots!

An online nomination form can be found on the IACH website.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Chairman of the independent judging panel which includes 10-timesolo circumnavigator Jean-Luc van den Heede, Dee Caffari, Stan Honey and Captain Dilip Donde, the first Indian sailor to complete a solo circumnavigation, will select a 20-strong list of contenders which then go forward to be voted on by the entire IACH membership to select the top six inductees.  The awards ceremony will be held in Les Sables d’Olonne, France in November during start week for the 2024/5 Vendee Globe Race.

Cape Horners Yacht Club

Now in its third year, the IACH Hall of Fame honours board lists 26 famous Cape Horners, the latest being Dame Ellen MacArthur and Jeanne Socrates – UK, Grant Dalton – New Zealand, and Skip Novak – USA, together with Franck Cammas and Michel Desjoyeaux from France. Their induction coincided with the opening of the Cape Horners Yacht Club, known locally as ‘Le Carre’ in Les Sables d’ Olonne, home of the Vendee Globe and Golden Globe races, and now the IACH Cape Horn Hall of Fame honours board. The club has a bar, dining room and large terrace overlooking the Vendee Globe marina and holds a growing collection of memorabilia from famous circumnavigations.

Circumnavigation Records

The Cape Horners Association also maintain a definitive list of solo and multi-crewed circumnavigations via Cape Horn which are available to view online.

The total number since modern records began with Argentine Vito Dumas became the first to complete a solo circumnavigation of the Southern Ocean via the three Great Capes back in 1944 has now reached 2,205. The latest IACH register update lists 184 who have completed solo non-stop circumnavigations, a further 153 have made similar solo circles of the globe via Cape Horn with stops, and a remarkable 1,868 have now done the same aboard crewed yachts.

The latest names to have been added to the Cape Horners registers – https://capehorners.org/circumnavigation-registers/ – include the six finishers in the2022/3 Golden Globe Race.

1.    Kirsten Neuschäfer (RSA) in her classic 36ft Cape George cutter Minnehaha in233d 18h 43r (average 5.35 knots)

2.    Abhilash Tomy (IND) aboard his Rustler 36 sloop BAYANAT in 239d 10h 46m (average5.22 knots)

3.  Michel Guggenberger (AUT) with his Biscay 36 ketch Nuri in 249d 17h 42m(average 5.00 knots)

Two more, Simon Curwen (GBR) and Jeremy Bagshaw (RSA) finished in the Chichester Class after making one stop, and Guy Waites (GBR) stopped twice.

Added to the crewed circumnavigation register are four sailors who completed all legs in the 2022/3 Globe 40 2-man Round the World Race

1.    Franz Budel and Ysbrand Endt (NED) sailing the Open 40 SEC HAYAI sloop.

2.    Joe Harris and Roger Junet (USA) aboard Gryphon Solo 2

In the Ocean race, only one yacht, the IMOCA 60 foiler Team Malizia, completed all legs of the 32,000-mile circumnavigation, along with four of her crew with a time of 97d, 12h, 32m, 16s (average 13.67 knots)  –  Will Harris(GBR), Rosalin Kuiper (NED), Yann Eilès (FRA), Antoine Auriol (FRA).

Check out the listings at https://capehorners.org/circumnavigation-registers/

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