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What is the race all about, you may be asking?

The BT Global Challenge, 2000-2001 is a race for 12 identical 72' steel yachts sailing  around the world against the prevailing winds and currents. Seven legs make up the race  which starts and ends in Southampton, UK, in September, 2000. See  the Dates page for the race itinerary.

The race is run by  the same organisers of the British Steel Challenge 1992-1993 and the BT Global Challenge 1996-1997.  A Race Committee administers the rules and regulations of the race which is run under the technical direction of the Royal Ocean Racing Club. The race follows the rules of the International Yacht Racing Union. While each leg is  a race in itself, the yacht with the most points over all seven legs wins the Princess Royal trophy. See the Home-to-be page for some facts and figures on the new yachts.

There are 18 people on each yacht, of whom only one, the Skipper, is a professional. Of the other seventeen, 15 are sailing the whole way round and two berths are available for the yacht sponsor's employees, who take part in one or more legs. These are known as the "leggers". Of the 17 crew, some may have Yachtmaster qualifications while others may not have started sailing until after being accepted for the race! Each 'Crew Volunteer' pays 24,850 for his or her berth. Ages range from 21-60 at the time of the race. The average age of a Crew Volunteer is 35 years old.

To date, 235 people have circumnavigated the globe in the previous east-west races, while more than 300 have sailed in one or more legs. We Crew Volunteers for the race in 2000-2001 are looking forward to swelling these numbers. In January, 2000, I found out about my race crew, our Skipper and our yacht sponsor.


The race is organised by the Challenge Business  which has Sir Chay Blyth at its head, while the title sponsor of the race is BT (formerly British Telecom). Each yacht has a major sponsor. These include Quadstone,  Compaq, Team SpirIT (a  consortium of IT companies), Logica, Norwich Union, Veritas, Olympic Group, LG Flatron, Save the Children  and the Isle of Man.

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Copyright   Jan Cambrensis 1999-2004.  All rights reserved.