Article in SAS

South African Entry for 2022

Simon’s Town resident and False Bay Yacht Club member, Jeremy Bagshaw, has entered the third edition of the iconic, retro, solo race around the world starting on September 4, 2022.

What’s it all about? 

The story of the inaugural Sunday Times Golden Globe Race of 1967/8 is now well known. It was the last feat that had not been achieved in sailing at that time: Solo, unassisted, non-stop around the world. Francis Chichester sailed solo around the world in 1967 but he stopped in Sydney along the way leaving the goal of non-stop circumnavigating wide open. Fearful that a French sailor would achieve this honour, several English yachtsmen planned to set off as soon as possible in a variety of vessels, most of which were completely unsuited to the task at hand. 

A reporter from the Sunday Times newspaper got wind of the various challengers preparing and created a race, around the various campaigns, with rules sufficiently flexible to permit any entrant to be legal in any vessel as long as they did not stop, had no outside assistance, were alone and left the three great capes to port before finishing where they had started. Which is what they were all intending to do anyway! The sailors had to start between 1 June and 31 October 1968.

Nine sailors started and only Robin Knox-Johnston finished.

The second edition of the race was run in 2018 to commemorate 50 years since the first race. It has morphed into a far more regulated and organised event which aims to retain the retro spirit of the original event. There were 18 starters and 5 finishers with the race being won by Frenchman Jean-Luc van den Heede (73) sailing his 5th solo circumnavigation.

The popularity of the 2nd running of this classic race has lead the organizer to commit to running it every 4 years and the third edition starts on the September 4, 2022 from Les Sables-d’Olonne in France.

The entries for the 2022 edition are closed as all 28 places have been taken up.

About Jeremy Bagshaw

Jeremy was introduced to sailing at the age of 7 by his father in what was then Rhodesia. He spent weekends and school holidays sailing every dinghy from Optimists and Dabchicks to Enterprises and Sonnets. He represented Rhodesia at the Optimist World Championships in 1974, 1975 and 1976 before returning to South Africa and sailing Sprogs and Laser 2’s, representing the Eastern Cape at Youth Trials. 

A student budget and the realisation that he was simply not heavy enough to sail dinghies offshore in Port Elizabeth lead to the start of keelboat sailing, initially from Algoa Bay Yacht Club and then later from East London Yacht Club as work took him further afield. In 1985, Jeremy crewed on a Charger 33 in the South Atlantic Race from Cape Town to Punta del Este and then later that year in the inaugural Beachcomber Race from Mauritius to Durban. There were several Lipton Cups, three Vasco da Gama Races and a brief Fireball campaign before work took Jeremy to the Middle East for six years. 

On return he settled in Cape Town and started sailing in False Bay on a range of boats before buying a share in a 26’ Dragonfly trimaran which he describes as being ‘the most fun one can have at sea with your clothes on!’ In 2008 he stepped in to replace the skipper of a Muira that had entered the Governor’s Cup Race to St Helena with a crew from the RMS St Helena, two of whom who had never sailed before! They won the race overall to the delight of the Governor and residents of the island. Two years later, he co-skippered the trimaran Banjo with the builder, owner and long time sailing friend, Frans Loots. They won the multihull class.

Jeremy sold his business in 2012 and over the next two years he fitted out a Dix 43 to do some cruising with his family. After almost a year sailing around the Indian Ocean, they returned to Simon’s Town and resettled ashore. In December 2018 he started a rigging company with two like-minded sailing friends and is still involved in the management of it although the Golden Globe Campaign is taking up most of his focus and time these days.

Jeremy would love to hear from anyone who would like to contribute to this campaign to be the first South African to successfully complete a solo, non-stop, around the world race. Bertie Reed, John Martin, Neal Petersen and JJ Provoyeur have all circumnavigated single handed, but none of them non-stop! 

Phase 2 of Jeremy’s campaign is to generate an interest in short handed sailing in South Africa, especially with previously disadvantaged sailors with the ultimate goal of having a young, black South African participate in the 2026 Golden Globe Race. 

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: