Stop the vows! In the meantime, thank you, as always there were so many of you who wanted to point out to us who, in your opinion, was the greatest sailor in history in this first elimination round. From the initial 30 names (
BY THE WAY: HERE YOU CAN FIND ALL THEIR STORIES
) we have thus arrived at the names of the 4 who, starting tomorrow at 1 p.m., will play for access to the “grand final” in two semifinals (first against fourth, second against third by number of votes). And it will still be your turn to vote for your favorite. But let’s come to the four top vote-getters.
We are not surprised by the first two, Agostino Straulino and Eric Tabarly, undisputed sailing legends, or the third, Bernard Moitessier. But the sailor who occupies the fourth place in terms of preferences expressed surprised us a bit: he is Francis Joyon, the French sailor who currently holds the record for solo round-the-world sailing. He undermined the likes of Joshua Slocum, Peter Blake, Robin Knox-Johnston. Let’ s find out the stories of the four semifinalists (the challenges will be structured as follows: Straulino-Joyon and Tabarly-Moitessier). Instead, at the bottom of the article you will find the poll rules and the special prize for you.
THE FOUR SEMIFINALISTS (IN ORDER OF NUMBER OF VOTES)
1. AGOSTINO STRAULINO
The man who “felt the wind.”
One Star Olympic gold and silver, four world titles, ten European titles. The palmares of Agostino Straulino (born in Mali Lošinj in 1914) are frightening.
The incredible string of European titles won consecutively (eight, from 1949 to 1956, paired with Nico Rode) the world championships and Olympic gold take on even greater value when one considers that Agostino had major vision problems following an accident during a port demining operation. But it was enough for him to “feel” the wind.
In 1961 he was commander of the Corsair II and participated in the Transpacifica, finishing fourth. Famous was his sailing out of Taranto harbor when he was commander of the Amerigo Vespucci in 1965. In 1973 he won the Giraglia and the One Ton Cup in Costa Smeralda at the helm of Ydra. He died in 2004.
Because: Straulino is universally considered the greatest Italian sailor, a man of incredible talent.
2. ERIC TABARLY
He who looked ahead (and left everyone behind)
Tabarly, who was born in Nantes, Brittany, in ’31 and disappeared in the ocean waves off the coast of Wales in 1998 while aboard the Pen Duick, his family boat, is considered by the French to be the greatest sailor ever. Listing his accomplishments is not easy; in 1964 aboard the Pen Duick II he won the Ostar.
Three years later he won, aboard the Pen Duick III (innovative aluminum schooner) all the regattas he entered, including Fastnet and Sydney-Hobart. In ’68 he launched on trimarans, but his adventure aboard the Pen Duick IV crashed into an off-course freighter. With the Pen Duick V he won the solo transpacific from San Francisco to Tokyo. In ’76 the Pen Duick VI won the Transat for the second time. In ’97 aboard an Open 60, Aquitaine Innovation, he won the Transat Jaques Vabre.
Because: Tabarly was the “Miles Davis” of sailing. Always ahead of others, both competitively and technologically. Myth.
3. BERNARD MOITESSIER
The most romantic of romantics
Bernard was born in 1925 in Vietnam, then called Indochina. In ’52 he crashed into rocks in the Indian Ocean; three years later, aboard a self-built boat, he sank off St. Vincent. In 1962 he bought the steel ketch Joshua, and in ’65 with his wife Francoise he completed the longest nonstop crossing: from Tahiti, Polynesia, to Alicante, a total of 14,216 miles ground in 126 days.
1968 saw him engaged in the famous Golden Globe where he decided to make his way to Polynesia to stay there. “I did this to save my soul,” he would declare. An ante litteram ecologist, in 1975 he decided to build a house with his own hands on the tiny atoll of Ahe in Polynesia. He will shipwreck again in 1982 with Joshua in Mexico. Stricken with cancer in ’88, he died in 1994.
Why: He is the first (and greatest) “romantic” navigator of the contemporary era.
4. FRANCIS JOYON.
The world’s fastest solitaire
The fastest loner around the world was born in 1956 in Hanches, on the agricultural plain of the small and remote Eur et Loire region. Joyon is the current holder of the all-time solo round-the-world record (57 days, 13 hours and 54 minutes), accrued in 2008. He had already won the record in 2004 aboard the trimaran Idec, shattering the previous record set in 1989. He would be beaten the following year (by only one day) by Britain’s Ellen MacArthur.
But Joyon did not lose heart and, aboard the new 30-meter-long Idec, with an average speed of 19.09 knots achieved an achievement that still endures. A loner at sea and in life, he is a shy and reserved type: a “sponsor chaser” who, in the world of ocean sailing, ends up being a romantic stereotype.
Because: He is currently the man who has completed the nonstop solo round-the-world trip in the shortest time.
HOW VOTING WORKS AND WHAT YOU WIN
Let’s see in detail how the challenge is structured:
– ELIMINATORY STAGE (MULTIPLE VOTE – CONCLUDED) – 30 to 4 CANDIDATES.
– 30 CANDIDATES to vote online on our website from August 1 to 31. You will be able to assign your preference to several candidates.
– The 4 candidates with the most votes pass the round.
– SEMIFINALS (SINGLE VOTE) – 4 TO 2 CANDIDATES
– 4 CANDIDATES to vote online Sept. 1-5. These will be two tennis-style semifinals, where two candidates (the first and fourth, second and third highest vote-getters in the elimination phase) will be pitted against each other. You will only be able to assign your preference to one of the candidates in each of the two semifinals
– 2 candidates who won the semifinals move on to the round
– FINAL (SINGLE GRADE)
– The 2 FINALIST CANDIDATES to be voted for online from September 6 to 12. You will only be able to assign your preference to one candidate. The most voted will be the greatest sailor in history according to you!
– WIN THE LONGEST GDV SUBSCRIPTION IN HISTORY!
Among all those who, between Aug. 1 and Sept. 12, send an email email@example.com with the reason why they voted for a candidate, a 30-year subscription to the Journal of Sailing will be drawn!