The Vendée Globe – The pinnacle event of the IMOCA Ocean Masters series


The Vendée Globe is still the only non-stop solo round the world race without assistance. The event was created in the spirit of the Golden Globe, which was in 1968 the first non-stop solo round the world race via the three capes (Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn). Out of the nine pioneers, who set sail in 1968, only one made it back to Falmouth on 6th April 1969 after 313 days at sea, the British sailor, Robin Knox-Johnston. Sir Robin Knox-Johnston thus became the first sailor to sail alone around the world without stopping…

Twenty years later, the French sailor Philippe Jeantot, following on from his two wins in the BOC Challenge (the solo round the world race with stopovers), came up with the idea of a new solo round the world race, but this time a non-stop race. The Globe Challenge was born, and a few editions later this became the Vendée Globe. On 26th November 1989, thirteen sailors set off in this first edition, which would last more than three months. Only seven made it back to les Sables d’Olonne.

Since then, the first seven editions of what the public refers to as the Everest of the seas, have enabled 138 sailors to line up at the start of the Vendée Globe, while only 71 have managed to cross the finishing line. This figure alone expresses the huge difficulty of this global event, where sailors face icy cold conditions, mountainous waves and leaden skies in the Southern Ocean. The Vendée Globe is above all a voyage to the ends of the sea and deep down into the sailor’s soul. It has been won by some of the greatest names in sailing: Titouan Lamazou, Alain Gautier, Christophe Auguin, Vincent Riou and François Gabart. Only one sailor has won it twice: Michel Desjoyeaux, in 2001 and 2009. The race record is held by François Gabart with a time of 78 days.

The eighth Vendée Globe will set sail from les Sables d’Olonne on Sunday 6th November 2016.

24’000 miles from Les Sables d’Olonne to Les Sables d’Olonne, France

Entries in the 2016 Edition

IMOCA60 Skipper Personal Race record
Maître CoQ Jérémie Beyou (FRA) 3rd participation – DNF VG 2008 & 2012
Initiatives-Coeur Tanguy De Lamotte (FRA) 2nd participation – 10th in VG 2012
PRB Vincent Riou (FRA) 4th participation – Winner VG 2004, 3rd in VG 2008, DNF VG 2012
Safran Morgan Lagravière (FRA) 1st participation
Banque Populaire Armel Le Cléac’h (FRA) 3rd participation – 2nd in VG 2008 & 2012
SMA Paul Meilhat (FRA) 1st participation
TechnoFirst – FaceOcean Sébastien Destremau (FRA) 1st participation
Stand As One Eric Bellion (FRA) 1st participation
StMichel – Virbac Jean-Pierre Dick (FRA) 4th participation – 6th in VG 2004, DNF VG 2008, 4th in VG 2012
Newrest – Matmut Fabrice Amedeo (FRA) 1st participation
Edmond De Rothschild Sébastien Josse (FRA) 3rd participation – 5th in VG 2004, DNF VG 2008 & 2012
Quéguiner – Leucémie Espoir Yann Eliès (FRA) 2nd participation – DNF VG 2008
Le Souffle Du Nord Thomas Ruyant (FRA) 1st participation
Bastide-Otio Kito De Pavant (FRA) 3rd participation – DNF VG 2008 & 2012
Finistère Mer Vent – Ensemble pour l’Innovation Jean Le Cam (FRA) 4th participation – 2nd in VG 2004, DNF VG 2008, 5th in VG 2012
MACSF Bertrand De Broc (FRA) 4th participation – DNF in VG 1992 & 1996, 9th in VG 2012
Bureau Vallée Louis Burton (FRA) 2nd participation – DNF VG 2012
Spirit Of Hungary Nandor Fa (HUN) 3rd participation – 5th in VG 1992, DNF VG 1996
Great American IV Rich Wilson (USA) 2nd participation – 9th in VG 2008
Hugo Boss Alex Thomson (GBR) 4th participation – DNF VG 2004 & 2008, 3rd in VG 2012
La Mie Câline Arnaud Boissières (FRA) 3rd participation – 7th in VG 2008, 8th in VG 2012
No Way Back Pieter Heerema (NL) 1st participation
La Fabrique Alan Roura (SUI) 1st participation
Energies Marines Renouvelables Stéphane Le Diraison (FRA) 1st participation
100% Natural Energy Conrad Colman (NZ) 1st participation
One Planet One Ocean Dadas Costa (ESP) 1st participation
Famille Mary – Etamines du Lys Romain Attanasio (FRA) 1st participation
Spirit of Yukoh Kojiro Shiraishi (JP) 1st participation
Kilcullen Voyager – Team Ireland Enda O’Coineen (IR) 1st participation
































Full information on the race on

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