Single-Handed Trans-Atlantic Race
The Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race, or STAR, is an east-to-west yacht race across the North Atlantic. When inaugurated in 1960, it was the first single-handed ocean yacht race; it is run from Plymouth to the USA, and is held every four years.
The race is organised by the Royal Western Yacht Club (RWYC) and was originally sponsored by the UK-based Observer newspaper, and known as the Observer Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race, or OSTAR; due to changes in sponsorship, it has been known as the CSTAR, Europe 1 STAR, and the Europe 1 New Man STAR. After the race in 2000 the RWYC took the decision to split the race into two events, one using smaller boats and intended for amateurs and young sailors, the other for professionals. The "amateur" event was raced as The OSTAR (meaning "the Original STAR") from 2005. The "professional" version was raced as The Transat from 2004.
The Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race was conceived by Herbert "Blondie" Hasler in 1956. The whole idea of a single-handed ocean yacht race was a revolutionary concept at the time, as the idea was thought to be extremely impractical; but this was especially true given the adverse conditions of their proposed route — a westward crossing of the north Atlantic Ocean, against the prevailing winds.
Hasler sought sponsorship for a race, but by 1959, no-one had been prepared to back the race. Finally, though, The Observer newspaper provided sponsorship, and in 1960, under the management of the Royal Western Yacht Club of England, the Observer Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race, or OSTAR, was on.
The first run of the race was a great success; since then, it has run every four years, and has become firmly established as one of the major events on the yachting calendar. The name of the event has changed several times due to changed in main sponsor; it has been known as the CSTAR, Europe 1 STAR, and the Europe 1 New Man STAR. The professional event has been run as The Transat from 2004, while the race smaller boats is run as the OSTAR. Throughout its history, however, the essentials of the race have remained the same. It has also become known as a testbed for new innovations in yacht racing; many new ideas started out in "the STAR".
The course of the race is westwards against the prevailing winds of the north Atlantic over a distance of around 3,000 nautical miles (5,600 km). The first edition of the race was from Plymouth United Kingdom to New York City; the editions from 1964 to 2000 were sailed from Plymouth to Newport, Rhode Island; the 2004 event sailed from Plymouth to Boston, Massachusetts.
The actual course steered is the decision of the individual skipper, and the result of the race can hinge on the chosen route:
- Rhumb line
- The shortest route on paper — i.e. on a Mercator projection chart — is a route which steers a constant compass course, known as the rhumb line route; this is 2,902 nautical miles. This lies between 40 degrees and 50 degrees north, and avoids the most severe weather.
- Great circle
- The actual shortest route is the great circle route, which is 2,810 nautical miles (5,200 km). This goes significantly farther north; sailors following this route frequently encounter fog and icebergs.
- Northern route
- It is sometimes possible to avoid headwinds by following a far northern route, north of the great circle and above the track followed by depressions. This is a longer way, though, at 3,130 nautical miles (5,800 km), and places the sailor in greater danger of encountering ice.
- Azores route
- A "softer" option can be to sail south, close to the Azores, and across the Atlantic along a more southerly latitude. This route can offer calmer reaching winds, but is longer at 3,530 nautical miles (6,540 km); the light and variable winds can also lead to slow progress.
- Trade wind route
- The most "natural" way to cross the Atlantic westward is to sail south to the trade winds, and then west across the ocean. However, this is the longest route of all, at 4,200 nautical miles (7,780 km).
This variety of routes is one of the factors which makes an east-to-west north Atlantic crossing interesting, as different skippers try different strategies against each other. In practice, though, the winning route is usually somewhere between the great circle and the rhumb line.
The OSTAR, 1960
The Observer Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race of 1960 was a milestone in sailing, being the first single-handed ocean yacht race. 115 people expressed an interest in the race, and there were eight entries, of whom five actually took part. Only four were at the starting line on June 11, however, as Jean Lacombe arrived late and started three days after the others. All of the boats were monohulls; this was to be the only edition of the race without multihulls. It was also the only edition of the race sailed from Plymouth to New York City.
The skippers tried a variety of routing strategies. Hasler chose the northern route, to avoid the depressions; Chichester and Lewis stayed closer to the great circle; Lacombe and Howells chose more southerly routes. Hasler sailed his junk-rigged Jester; Chichester had by far the longest boat, his 40-foot (12 m) Gipsy Moth III, and this was reflected in the results:
|Francis Chichester||Gipsy Moth III||United Kingdom||Mono-40||40 days 12 hours 30 min|
|Blondie Hasler||Jester||United Kingdom||Mono-26||48 days 12 hours 02 min|
|David Lewis||Cardinal Vertue||United Kingdom||Mono-25||55 days 00 hours 50 min|
|Val Howells||EIRA||United Kingdom||Mono-25||62 days 05 hours 50 min|
|Jean Lacombe||Cap Horn||France||Mono-21.5||74 days ?? hours ?? min|
The race had a huge impact on ocean sailing, and in particular solo sailing. Hasler's wind-vane self-steering gear revolutionised short-handed sailing, and his other major innovation — using a junk rig for safer and more manageable shorthanded sailing — influenced many subsequent sailors.
The OSTAR, 1964
Thirteen competitors started the next edition of the race in 1964, which by now was firmly established on the racing scene. All of the five original competitors entered, and all five improved their original times; but the show was stolen by French naval officer Éric Tabarly, who entered a custom-built 44-foot (13 m) plywood ketch, Pen Duick II. The days of racers sailing the family boat were numbered following Tabarly's performance, for which he was awarded the Légion d'honneur by president Charles de Gaulle. It is also noteworthy that Tabarly and Jean Lacombe were the only French entrants in this race; Tabarly's success was instrumental in popularising the sport in France, the country which in future years would come to dominate it.
This was to be the year in which several future trends were established. Multihulls made their first appearance — sailing in the same class as the other boats; and the race featured the use of radio, for the first time, by several competitors who gave daily progress reports to their sponsors.
|Éric Tabarly||Pen Duick II||France||Mono-44||27 days 03 hours 56 min|
|Francis Chichester||Gipsy Moth III||United Kingdom||Mono-40||29 days 23 hours 57 min|
|Val Howells||Akka||United Kingdom||Mono-35||32 days 18 hours 08 min|
|Alec Rose||Lively Lady||United Kingdom||Mono-36||36 days 17 hours 30 min|
|Blondie Hasler||Jester||United Kingdom||Mono-26||37 days 22 hours 05 min|
|Bill Howell||Stardrift||Australia||Mono-30||38 days 03 hours 23 min|
|David Lewis||Rehu Moana||United Kingdom||Cat-40||38 days 12 hours 04 min|
|Mike Ellison||Ilala||United Kingdom||Mono-36||46 days 06 hours 26 min|
|Jean Lacombe||Golif||France||Mono-22||46 days 07 hours 05 min|
|Bob Bunker||Vanda Caelea||United Kingdom||Mono-25||49 days 18 hours 45 min|
|Mike Butterfield||Misty Miller||United Kingdom||Cat-30||53 days 00 hours 05 min|
|Geoffrey Chaffey||Ericht 2||United Kingdom||Mono-31||60 days 11 hours 15 min|
|Derek Kelsall||Folatre||United Kingdom||Tri-35||61 days 14 hours 04 min|
|Axel Penderson||Marco Polo||Denmark||Mono-28||63 days 13 hours 30 min|
|Robin McCurdy||Tammie Norie||United Kingdom||Mono-40||retired|
The OSTAR, 1968
The race was by now acquiring a reputation for pushing forward the technology of ocean sailing, and the 1968 edition featured the first use of computer-based weather routing. A far cry from today's laptop-laden yachts, this consisted of a land-based mainframe computer, the English Electric KDF9, linked by radio to Geoffrey Williams in his boat Sir Thomas Lipton. Although outside private routing advice of this kind is no longer permitted in most "unassisted" races, it is now routine for ocean sailors to do similar analyses using their on-board computers to process public weather information.
Williams created another story by his use of the "shortcut" through the Nantucket Shoal. This dangerous route was supposed to be illegal, but due to an error the race instructions required skippers only to keep south of Nantucket, instead of Nantucket Light. Williams successfully navigated the treacherous route in a gale. Gales were a major feature of the race, with a large storm on the 11th of June, and Hurricane Brenda, both contributing to the large number of retired and abandoned boats; one casualty was Éric Tabarly, aboard his new trimaran Pen Duick IV.
Although won by a monohull, this race saw the multihulls firmly established on the scene. Thirteen of the 35 boats entered were multihulls, led by the controversial proa Cheers; many observers felt that a proa was entirely unsuitable for ocean sailing, but she made a fast time along the Azores route.
The top seven finishers:
|Geoffrey Williams||Sir Thomas Lipton||United Kingdom||Mono-57||25 days 20 hours 33 min|
|Bruce Dalling||Voortrekker||South Africa||Mono-50||26 days 13 hours 42 min|
|Tom Follett||Cheers||United States||Proa-40||27 days 00 hours 13 min|
|Leslie Williams||Spirit of Cutty Sark||United Kingdom||Mono-53||29 days 10 hours 17 min|
|Bill Howell||Golden Cockerel||Australia||Cat-42.5||31 days 16 hours 24 min|
|Brian Cooke||Opus||United Kingdom||Mono-32||34 days 08 hours 23 min|
|Martin Minter-Kemp||Gancia Girl||United Kingdom||Tri-42||34 days 13 hours 15 min|
The 17 non-finishers included Éric Tabarly on Pen Duick IV, and Alex Carozzo of Italy on San Giorgio. Carozzo went on to compete in the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, the other major single-handed sailing event of the year.
The OSTAR, 1972
Tabarly's trimaran Pen Duick IV made a return to the race in 1972, sailed by Alain Colas, at the head of a strong French contingent; of the 55 entrants, 12 were French, and the top three finishers were all French.
The average boat size was increasing rapidly, as longer boats are capable of higher speeds. A sign of the changing times was that the rules had a minimum size, to deter unsafe entries, but no maximum; and so the star of the monohull fleet was Vendredi Treize (Friday the 13th), a 128-foot (39 m) three-masted schooner — a huge boat for a single-hander. However, the race was now dominated by the multihulls, with a trimaran winning and four of the top six finishers being multis.
The 55 entrants included the first female competitors, two French and one Polish. Sir Francis Chichester, now 70 years old, sailed with the fleet in Gipsy Moth V; however, he was unable to complete what was to be his last race, and he died later the same year. Peter Crowther made the longest crossing in the race's history while sailing the oldest boat, the 66 year old gaff cutter Golden Vanity; his crossing took 88 days.
The top ten finishers:
|Alain Colas||Pen Duick IV||France||Tri-70||20 days 13 hours 15 min|
|Jean-Yves Terlain||Vendredi Treize||France||Mono-128||21 days 05 hours 14 min|
|Jean-Marie Vidal||Cap 33||France||Tri-53||24 days 05 hours 40 min|
|Brian Cooke||British Steel||United Kingdom||Mono-59||24 days 19 hours 28 min|
|Tom Follett||Three Cheers||United States||Tri-46||27 days 11 hours 04 min|
|Gerard Pesty||Architeuthis||France||Tri-55||28 days 11 hours 55 min|
|Martin Minter-Kemp||Strongbow||United Kingdom||Mono-65||28 days 12 hours 46 min|
|Alain Gliksman||Toucan||France||Mono-34.5||28 days 12 hours 54 min|
|Franco Faggioni||Sagittario||Italy||Mono-50.5||28 days 23 hours 05 min|
|James Ferris||Whisper||United States||Mono-53.5||29 days 11 hours 15 min|
There were eleven retirements, and one boat was abandoned.
The OSTAR, 1976
1976 saw the biggest edition of the race, in all senses. 125 boats entered, and the 128-foot (39 m) Vendredi Treize returned as ITT Oceanic. However, the all-time size record for the race, and probably for any single-hander, was set by Alain Colas, sailing the 236-foot (72 m) four-masted schooner Club Mediterranée. Although about the same overall length as HMS Victory (which had a crew of 820), this modern boat was expressly designed for easy handling.
The race was organised into three classes: Jester (J): up to 38 ft (12 m); Gipsy Moth (G): 38 to 65 ft (20 m); and Penduick (P): over 65 ft, unlimited. Monohulls and multihulls were not segregated. It is notable that the second-placed boat overall was a trimaran of the smallest class; and perhaps even more so that third place went to a monohull from the same class.
Two major depressions hit the race and caused a record fifty retirements; Tony Bullimore was rescued by a passing ship after his boat caught fire, and American Mike Flanagan was lost overboard from Galloping Gael. A particularly sad story was that of Mike McMullen, whose wife Lizzie was electrocuted and killed while helping him to prepare Three Cheers for the race, just two days before the start. Believing that Lizzie would have wanted him to go on, he started the race, but was never seen again.
Colas in Club Mediterranée was plagued by halyard problems; although 330 miles (531 km) in the lead, he was forced to pull in to Halifax, Nova Scotia to make repairs, and was penalised 58 hours for accepting help. The race then went to Éric Tabarly, whose win, on the 73-foot (22 m) Pen Duick VI, was his second; it was also the last win for a monohull.
Clare Francis in Robertson's Golly (Ohlson 38) finished 13th and broke the women's single-handed transatlantic record by three days.
The top finishers (including the top three of each class):
|Éric Tabarly||Pen Duick VI||France||Mono-73(P)||23 days 20 hours 12 min|
|Mike Birch||The Third Turtle||Canada||Tri-32(J)||24 days 20 hours 39 min|
|Kazimierz Jaworski||Spaniel||Poland||Mono-38(J)||24 days 23 hours 40 min|
|Tom Grossman||Cap 33||United States||Tri-53(P)||26 days 08 hours 15 min|
|Alain Colas||Club Mediterranée||France||Mono-236(P)||26 days 13 hours 36 min|
|Jean Claude Parisis||Petrouchka||France||Mono-47(G)||27 days 00 hours 55 min|
|David Palmer||FT||United Kingdom||Tri-35(J)||27 days 07 hours 45 min|
|Walter Greene||Friends||United States||Tri-30(J)||27 days 10 hours 37 min|
|Jaques Timsit||Arauna IV||France||Mono-38(G)||27 days 15 hours 32 min|
|Alain Gabbay||Objectif Sud 3||France||Mono-38(J)||28 days 09 hours 58 min|
|Francis Stokes||Moonshine||United States||Mono-40(G)||28 days 12 hours 46 min|
The 1/OSTAR, 1980
The 1980 race introduced a length limit of 56 feet overall, to curb the excesses of previous races. The class sizes were adjusted downwards: Jester (J): up to 32 ft (10 m); Gipsy Moth (G): 32 to 44 ft (13 m); Penduick (P): 44 to 56 ft (17 m). The new restrictions were unpopular with some sailors, particularly the French, many of whom opted to sail instead in the new Route du Rhum race.
The race was once again dominated by multihulls, with the top five places all taken by trimarans, and marked the end of even competition between monos and multis. Éric Tabarly was to compete, aboard the hydrofoil trimaran Paul Ricard, but was unable to enter due to injury. The race continued its history of innovation with the first use of the Argos satellite-based tracking system; this system allows boats to be tracked during the race, and can also be used to signal distress. The use of this system has now become a major feature of many ocean races, such as the Vendée Globe. The cost of the system was covered by introducing a new race sponsor, the radio station Europe 1, in conjunction with the Observer.
The winner was American Phil Weld, in only his second OSTAR, whose trimaran Moxie was custom built to the 56-foot (17 m) limit; he set a new course record of 18 days. Many were impressed by this popular sailor's win at the age of 65. The preponderance of larger boats, and particularly multihulls, left the smaller Jesters seriously outclassed; the highest-placed was Free Newspapers, sailed by John Chaundy, who finished in 29th place, with a time of 28 days., http://www.rwyc.org/rwdb/article/view.asp?id=67&sm=OSTAR
The top ten finishers:
|Philip Weld||Moxie||United States||Tri-51(P)||17 days 23 hours 12 min|
|Nick Keig||Three Legs of Mann III||United Kingdom||Tri-53(P)||18 days 06 hours 04 min|
|Philip Steggall||Jeans Foster||United States||Tri-38(G)||18 days 06 hours 45 min|
|Mike Birch||Olympus Photo||Canada||Tri-46(P)||18 days 07 hours 15 min|
|Walter Greene||Chaussettes Olympia||United States||Tri-35(G)||18 days 17 hours 29 min|
|Kazimierz Jaworski||Spaniel II||Poland||Mono-56(P)||19 days 13 hours 25 min|
|Czesław Gogołkiewicz||Raczyński 2||Poland||Mono-56(P)||Collision|
|Edoardo Austoni||Chica Boba||Italy||Mono-56(P)||20 days 02 hours 30 min|
|Daniel Gilard||Brittany Ferries I||France||Mono-44(G)||21 days 00 hours 09 min|
|Richard Konkolski||Nike II||Czech Republic||Mono-44(G)||21 days 06 hours 21 min|
|Tom Grossman||Kriter VII||United States||Tri-56(P)||21 days 08 hours 01 min|
The 1/OSTAR, 1984
The 1984 race saw the pace of technical innovation continue to accelerate. Custom-built trimarans were again the main force, but the monohulls also advanced, with the introduction of water ballast and other innovations. Some controversy over the size limitations in the previous race resulted in slightly larger classes, and the removal of restrictions on bow and stern overhangs; yachts were divided into five classes, but still with no distinction between monohulls and multihulls. Europe 1 continued to support the race, and Argos beacons were again used by all boats.
The first day of the race saw several dismastings in strong gales, and several skippers were awarded time for rescuing other racers. This resulted in an upset at the finish — Philippe Poupon, sailing the 56-foot (17 m) trimaran Fleury Michon VI, arrived first with a time of 16 days 12 hours, and went to bed thinking that he had won. But the race was awarded to Yvon Fauconnier, who finished 10 hours later but was given a 16-hour time allowance for rendering assistance to Philippe Jeantot, whose catamaran Credit Agricole had capsized. The winner among the monohulls was Warren Luhrs, in his 60-footer Thursday's Child.
The top ten finishers:
|Yvon Fauconnier||Umupro Jardin V||France||Tri-53(I)||16 days 06 hours 25 min|
|Philippe Poupon||Fleury Michon||France||Tri-56(I)||16 days 12 hours 25 min|
|Marc Pajot||Elf Aquitaine II||France||Cat-59(I)||16 days 12 hours 48 min|
|Éric Tabarly||Paul Ricard||France||Tri-60(I)||16 days 14 hours 21 min|
|Peter Philips||Travacrest Seaway||United Kingdom||Tri-60(I)||16 days 17 hours 23 min|
|Daniel Gilard||Nantes||France||Tri-60(I)||16 days 17 hours 51 min|
|Olivier Moussy||Region Centre||France||Tri-45(II)||16 days 19 hours 16 min|
|Bruno Peyron||L'iglon||France||Cat-60(I)||16 days 20 hours 21 min|
|Francois Boucher||Ker Cadelac||France||Tri-50(I)||16 days 21 hours 48 min|
|Warren Luhrs||Thursday's Child||United States||Mono-60(I)||16 days 22 hours 27 min|
The CSTAR, 1988
With Carlsberg taking over as main sponsor, the Carlsberg Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race of 1988 saw 95 entrants, with custom-built multihulls again dominating. Favourable weather made ideal conditions for a fast pace, and indeed Philippe Poupon's winning time set a new race record of 10 days, 9 hours and 10 minutes. One of the main hazards of the race was damage by whales; Mike Birch's Fujicolor was damaged by a whale, forcing him to retire from the race; and David Sellings was forced to abandon Hyccup after she was sunk by an aggressive pod of whales. The original Jester, which had taken part in every edition of the race, was lost in heavy weather in the tail-end of the fleet.
The top eleven finishers were all Class 1 multihulls. The top five were:
|Philippe Poupon||Fleury Michon||France||Tri-60(I)||10 days 09 hours 15 min|
|Olivier Moussy||Laiterie Mt St Michel||France||Tri-60(I)||11 days 04 hours 17 min|
|Loïck Peyron||Lada Poch II||France||Tri-60(I)||11 days 09 hours 02 min|
|Philip Steggall||Sebago||United States||Tri-60(I)||11 days 09 hours 55 min|
|Bruno Peyron||VSD||France||Cat-60(I)||12 days 23 hours 20 min|
The fastest monohull, UAP 1992, finished 13th. The top five monohulls:
|Jean Yves Terlain||UAP 1992||France||Mono-60(I)||17 days 04 hours 05 min|
|John Martin||Allied Bank||South Africa||Mono-60(I)||17 days 08 hours 18 min|
|Jose Ugarte||Castrol Solo||Spain||Mono-60(I)||17 days 21 hours 47 min|
|Titouan Lamazou||Ecureuil d'Aquitaine||France||Mono-60(I)||18 days 07 hours 00 min|
|Courtney Hazelton||Mariko||United States||Mono-45(III)||21 days 05 hours 44 min|
The Europe 1 STAR, 1992
The Europe 1 Star of 1992 saw the fleet beset by a full range of hazards — storms, icebergs, trawlers, fog and whales hit boats on the northern route, before they were finally becalmed off Newfoundland. The monohulls managed the heavy conditions and crosswinds quite well, but the multis were plagued with capsizes and damage. Yves Parlier was the top monohull skipper in a new Open 60, setting a monohull record time of 14 days 16 hours.
The top ten finishers included two monohulls:
|Loïck Peyron||Fujicolor||Tri-60(1)||11 days 01 hours 35 min|
|Paul Vatine||Haute-Normandie||Tri-60(1)||12 days 07 hours 49 min|
|Francis Joyon||Banque Populaire||Tri(1)||12 days 09 hours 14 min|
|Hervé Laurent||Took Took||Tri-60(1)||13 days 04 hours 01 min|
|Laurent Bourgnon||Primagaz||Tri-60(1)||13 days 07 hours 40 min|
|Yves Parlier||Cacolac d'Aquitaine||Mono-60(1)||14 days 16 hours 01 min|
|Etienne Giroire||Up My Sleeve||Tri-40(4)||16 days 06 hours 45 min|
|Mark Gatehouse||Queen Anne's Battery||Mono-60(1)||16 days 11 hours 30 min|
|Hervé Cléris||C L M||Tri-50(2)||16 days 12 hours 17 min|
|Pascal Hérold||Dupon Duran||Tri-50(2)||16 days 20 hours 16 min|
The Europe 1 STAR, 1996
Loïck Peyron had a new 60-foot (18 m) trimaran, Fujicolor II, for the 1996 edition of the race; and he led at the start, passing the Eddystone lighthouse at 28 knots (52 km/h). However, Francis Joyon dominated the race, and 600 miles (970 km) from the finish seemed set to win, at which point he was 24 hours ahead of his nearest rival; but his trimaran Banque Populaire was capsized by a gust off Nova Scotia, leaving the race to Peyron.
Peyron's time of 10 days, 10 hours and 5 minutes, was just 50 minutes short of the course record. Peyron was the first person to win two successive editions of the race, and only the second to win twice. Gerry Roufs won the monohull division, sailing the 60-foot (18 m) Groupe LG2. Italian Giovanni Soldini won the 50-foot (15 m) monohull class, in Telecom Italia.
Only three multihulls overcame the conditions to make the top ten finishers:
|Loïck Peyron||Fujucolour II||Tri-60(1)||10 days 10 hours 05 min|
|Paul Vatine||Region Haute Normandie||Tri-60(1)||10 days 13 hours 05 min|
|Mike Birch||Biscuits la Trinitaine||Tri-60(1)||14 days 12 hours 55 min|
|Gerry Roufs||Groupe LG 2||Mono-60(1)||15 days 14 hours 50 min|
|Giovanni Soldini||Telecom Italia||Mono-50(2)||15 days 18 hours 29 min|
|Josh Hall||Gartmore Investments||Mono-60(1)||16 days 15 hours 56 min|
|Vittorio Malingri||Anicaflash||Mono-60(1)||16 days 19 hours 24 min|
|Hervé Laurent||Groupe LG1||Mono-60(1)||17 days 00 hours 55 min|
|Eric Dumont||Café Legal le Gout||Mono-60(1)||17 days 01 hours 11 min|
|Catherine Chabaud||Whirlpool-Vital-Europe 2||Mono-60(1)||17 days 06 hours 43 min|
The Europe 1 New Man STAR, 2000
A surprising total of 24 Open 60 monohulls entered the race; most of these were using the event as a qualifying run for the Vendée Globe starting later in the year. One of these was the youngest racer in the fleet at age 23, Ellen MacArthur in her Owen-Clarke designed Open 60 Kingfisher; she beat the big names to become the surprise winner of the monohull division, and the youngest ever winner of the race. The overall winner was Francis Joyon, in his trimaran Eure et Loir.
|ORMA 60 Multihulls|
|Francis Joyon||Eure et Loir||France||9 days 23 hours 21 min|
|Marc Guillemot||Biscuits la Trinitaine||France||10 days 1 hours 59 min|
|Franck Cammas||Groupama||France||10 days 2 hours 40 min|
|Alain Gautier||Foncia||France||10 days 8 hours 37 min|
|Jean-Luc Nelias||Belgacom||France||10 days 19 hours 35 min|
|Yvan Bourgnon||Bayer en France||France||16 days 6 hours 21 min|
|Lalou Roucayrol||Banque Populaire||France||lost a hull|
|IMOCA 60 Monohulls|
|Ellen MacArthur||Kingfisher||United Kingdom||14 days 23 hours 1 min|
|Roland Jourdain||Sill Beurre le Gall||France||15 days 13 hours 38 min|
|Mike Golding||Team Group 4||United Kingdom||15 days 14 hours 50 min|
|Thierry Dubois||Solidaires||France||15 days 15 hours 33 min|
|Giovanni Soldini||Fila||Italy||16 days 4 hours 10 min|
|Catherine Chabaud||Whirlpool||France||16 days 10 hours 19 min|
|Michel Desjoyeaux||PRB||France||16 days 15 hours 51 min|
|Marc Thiercelin||Active Wear||France||17 days 15 hours 44 min|
|Dominique Wavre||Union Bancaire Privee||Switzerland||17 days 17 hours 2 min|
|Joe Seeten||Nord Pas de Calais||France||18 days 2 hours 22 min|
|Xavier Lecoeur||GEB||France||19 days 13 hours 3 min|
|Didier Munduteguy||DDP 60me Sud||France||21 days 7 hours 18 min|
|Patrick Favre||Adrenalines||France||31 days 5 hours 19 min|
|Yves Parlier||Aquitaine Innovations||France||dismasted|
|Thomas Coville||Sodebo Savourons la Vie||France||dismasted|
|Eric Dumont||Services Euroka||France||dismasted|
|Dirk Gunst||Tomidi||Belgium||autopilot failure|
|Richard Tolkien||This Time||United Kingdom||sail damage|
|Bruce Burgess||Hawaiian Express||United States||personal reasons|
The Transat, 2004
After the 2000 event, the RYC decided to split the race into two separate events. The 2004 professional edition of the race featured a new title — The Transat — and a new finish, at Boston, Massachusetts. 37 boats entered, in four classes: ORMA 50 and 60-foot (18 m) multihulls; and IMOCA 50 and 60-foot (18 m) monohulls. Despite stormy conditions, all four classes of boats broke records; seven of the Open 60 monohulls broke the previous monohull record. Of the first four IMOCA Open 60's, Ecover, Pindar AlphaGraphics and Skandia (ex Kingfisher) were all designed by the British designers, Owen Clarke Design. This office also designed the first IMOCA 50, Artforms, which broke the 'Class 2' record. Several boats suffered damage, however.
|ORMA 60 Multihulls|
|Michel Desjoyeaux||Geant||France||8 days 8 hours 29 min|
|Thomas Coville||Sodebo||France||8 days 10 hours 38 min|
|Franck Cammas||Groupama||France||8 days 14 hours 16 min|
|Alain Gautier||Foncia||France||9 days 7 hours 5 min|
|Karine Fauconnier||Sergio Tacchini||France||9 days 12 hours 36 min|
|Lalou Roucayrol||Banque Populaire||France||9 days 14 hours 5 min|
|Giovanni Soldini||TIM Progetto Italia||Italy||10 days 6 hours 26 min|
|Philippe Monnet||Sopra||France||10 days 9 hours 28 min|
|Fred Le Peutrec||Gitana XI||France||11 days 9 hours 20 min|
|Steve Ravussin||Banque Covefi||Switzerland||12 days 4 hours 27 min|
|Yves Parlier||Mediatis Region Aquitaine||France||13 days 7 hours 11 min|
|Marc Guillemot||Gitana X'||France||'broken centre board|
|IMOCA 60 Monohulls|
|Mike Golding||Ecover||United Kingdom||12 days 15 hours 18 min|
|Dominique Wavre||Temenos||Switzerland||12 days 18 hours 22 min|
|Mike Sanderson||Pindar Alphagraphics||New Zealand||12 days 20 hours 54 min|
|Nick Moloney||Skandia||Australia||13 days 9 hours 13 min|
|Conrad Humphreys||Hellomoto||United Kingdom||13 days 20 hours 24 min|
|Marc Thiercelin||Pro-Form||France||14 days 1 hours 41 min|
|Hervé Laurent||UUDS||France||14 days 3 hours 58 min|
|Sebastien Josse||VMI||France||14 days 10 hours 2 min (corrected)|
|Karen Leibovici||Atlantica-Charente Maritime||France||17 days 17 hours 12 min|
|Norbert Sedlacek||Austria One||Austria||17 days 18 hours 35 min|
|Charles Hedrich||Objectif 3||France||18 days 4 hours 12 min|
|Anne Liardet||Quicksilver||France||19 days 14 hours 27 min|
|Bernard Stamm||Cheminees Pouj. Armour Lux||Switzerland||capsized|
|ORMA 50 Multihulls|
|Eric Bruneel||Trilogic||14 days 1 hours 23 min|
|Rich Wilson||Great American II||United States||15 days 0 hours 19 min|
|Dominique Demachy||Gify||15 days 13 hours 13 min|
|Etienne Hochede||PiR2||19 days 13 hours 45 min|
|Franck-Yves Escoffier||Crepes Whaou!||France||broke centreboard|
|Mike Birch||Nootka||Canada||autipilots broke|
|IMOCA 50 Monohulls|
|Kip Stone||Artforms||United States||15 days 5 hours 20 min|
|Joe Harris||Wells Fargo||United States||16 days 14 hours 21 min|
|Jacques Bouchacourt||Okami||France||17 days 23 hours 17 min|
|Roger Langevin||Branec III||France||over time limit|
Faraday Mill OSTAR 2005
The 2005 event was the first held for smaller boats, again under the name OSTAR, sponsored by Faraday Mill.
35 boats took part with 16 forced to retire. Franco Mozoli won the race in Cotonella, taking 17 days and 21 hours to finish. The 2005 race featured the first single-handed, trans-atlantic crossing by a profoundly deaf person: Gerry Hughes.
|Franco Manzoli||Cotonella||Italy||17 days 21 hours 41 min|
|Roger Langevin||Branec IV||France||18 days 6 hours 7 min|
|Pierre Antoine||Spirit||France||18 days 8 hours 43 min|
|Leon Bart||Houd van Hout||Netherlands||25 days 16 hours 45 min|
|Aurelia Ditton||Shockwave||United Kingdom||27 days 9 hours 19 min|
|Anne Caseneuve||Acanthe Ingeniere||France||Retired - injured knee|
|Etienne Giroire||Up My Sleeve||United States||Retired|
|Ross Hobson||Mollymawk||United Kingdom||Retired - broken daggerboard|
|Steve White||Olympian Challenger||United Kingdom||20 days 5 hours 24 min|
|Yves Lepine||Atlantix Express||Canada||21 days 4 hours 40 min|
|Nico Budel||Hayai||Netherlands||21 days 18 hours 17 min|
|Philip Rubright||Echo Zulu||United States||23 days 22 hours 50 min|
|Lionel Regnier||Trois Mille Sabords||France||25 days 23 hours 48 min|
|Mervyn Wheatley||Tamarind||United Kingdom||26 days 2 hours 48 min|
|Peter Keig||Zeal||United Kingdom||27 days 11 hours 31 min|
|Stephen Gratton||Amelie of Dart||United Kingdom||30 days 4 hours 32 min|
|Richard Hatton||Chimp||United Kingdom||30 days 18 hours 7 min|
|Huib Swets||Vijaya||Netherlands||32 days 5 hours 4 min|
|Gerry Hughes||Quest II||United Kingdom||34 days 4 hours 15 min|
|Paul Heiney||Ayesha of St Mawes||United Kingdom||35 days 14 hours 19 min|
|Groot Cees||Reality||Netherlands||41 days 16 hours 15 min|
|Tony Waldeck||Adrienne May||United Kingdom||Retired - mainsail luff cars failed|
|Michel Jaheny||Chivas III||France||Retired|
|Patrice Carpentier||VM Materiaux||France||Retired|
|Bart Boosman||De Franschman||Netherlands||Retired - broken shroud|
|Hannah White||Spirit of Canada||United Kingdom||Retired - auto helm broken|
|Peter Crowther||Suomi Kudu||United Kingdom||Retired - broken forestay|
|Michel Kleinjans||Roaring Forty||Belgium||Retired - bulkhead problems|
|Pieter Ardiaans||Robosail||Netherlands||Retired - boom, vang problems|
|Ronny Nollet||La Promesse||Belgium||Retired - previous back injury|
|Pierre Chatelin||Destination Calais||France||Retired - problems with boat|
|Bertus Buys||Sea Beryl||Netherlands||Retired - mainsail damage|
|Bram Van De Loosdrecht||Octavus||Netherlands||Retired - dismasted|
|Jacques Dewez||Blue Shadow||France||Retired - damaged at start|
The Artemis Transat, 2008
The 2008 Transat race was named after its sponsor, Artemis. On Thursday 15 May, Frenchman Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) had to retire from the race after a collision with a whale. Sebastien Josse (BT), who was leading, had to retire owing to damage to the mainsail carriage on Saturday 17 May, leaving Vincent Riou (PRB) take the lead on the Sunday morning. Loïck Peyron, on Gitana Eighty, caught up with Vincent Riou, who had to abandon the race due to serious keel damage after a collision with a basking shark on the night of Monday 12 / Tuesday 13 May. The race jury decided to grant two and a half hours of bonus time to Loïck Peyron after he rescued Vincent Riou. Starting on 11 May from Plymouth, Peyron spent 12 days, 11 hours, 15 minutes and 35 seconds (not including the time bonus) to cover the 2,992 miles of the race (averaging 9,938 knots), thus improving previous record of 12 days, 15 hours, 18 minutes and 8 seconds, which was held by Mike Golding (Ecover).
|IMOCA 60 Monohulls|
|1||Loïck Peyron||Gitana Eighty||France||12 days 8 hours 45 min|
|2||Armel Le Cleac'h||Brit Air||France||12 days 12 hours 28 min|
|3||Yann Eliès||Generali||France||13 days 14 hours 30 min|
|4||Marc Guillemot||Safran||France||14 days 21 hours 18 min|
|5||Samantha Davies||Roxy||United Kingdom||15 days 10 hours 00 min|
|Ab||Sébastien Josse||BT||France||sail damage|
|Ab||Unai Basurko||Pakea Bizkaia||Spain|
|Class 40 Monohulls|
|1||-||-||- days - hours - min|
- The Transat, the official web site
- All the Single handed Transatlantic Race history, from Team Woodbase
- The Singlehanded Trans-Atlantic Race 1960–2000, by Peter Marsh
- History — 11 June 1960, from Team Woodbase
- Peyron Repeats STAR Triumph, from Sailing World
- Records Tumble in Classic Transat Race, from the official web site
- The Race — The Course, from Team Woodbase
- The Golden Globe Race, by Barry Pickthall, from boats.com
- Finding Beauty in a Junk, by Michelle Potter
- History — 23 May 1964, from Team Woodbase
- History — 1 June 1968, from Team Woodbase
- History — 17 June 1972, from Team Woodbase
- Club Méditerranée: un géant parmi les monocoques (French), with a picture of the boat
- The Battle of Trafalgar Muster Roll, from the official HMS Victory website
- History — 5 June 1976, from Team Woodbase
- 1980 — Triumph of the Multihulls, from the official web site
- History — 7 June 1980, from Team Woodbase
- Shelagh Mackenzie and Kent Nason (co-directors) (1982). "Singlehanders" (49-minute film; requires Adobe Flash). Documentary film. National Film Board of Canada. http://www.nfb.ca/film/singlehanders/. Retrieved 11 September 2012.
- History — 2 June 1984, from Team Woodbase
- History — 5 June 1988, from Team Woodbase
- History — 7 June 1992, from Team Woodbase
- History — 1996, from Team Woodbase
- The Race — This Year, from Team Woodbase
- 2000 — Open 60 battle, from the official web site
- Kingfisher Challenge 2000 — She Did It!, from Adverc Battery Management
- LARGEST EVER PROFESSIONAL 60-FOOT CLASS TO COMPETE IN THE TRANSAT, from Nick Moloney
- Quest II Sailing Project