With less than two months to go, some of the Golden Globe Race skippers reveal how they are preparing for their greatest challenge

Some of the skippers give their thoughts ahead of the start of the Golden Globe Race on 1 July 2018.

Robin Davie – UK

A golden globe entrant Robin Davie in overall working on his boat

British entrant Robin Davie has done most of the refit work himself. Credit: Robin Davie/PPL/GGR

‘The race is about the effort the person on board makes and their psychology, rather than the dollars spent on getting to the start line,’ reflects Robin Davie, who for the last eight months has been rebuilding his Rustler 36, C’est La Vie in a shed in Falmouth.

The BOC Challenge Around Alone Race veteran believes ‘preparation, preparation, preparation’ is key to the race and says he is looking forward to ‘sailing the trade winds, the calm of the doldrums and the storms of the Southern Ocean.’

‘I will be treating every problem as if it has a solution to be found. Things can go wrong no matter how many sea miles you have under your belt. The key is mindset. Don’t have great expectations and build yourself up so things can come crashing down.’

Ertan Beskardes – UK

A sailor sitting on a deck drinking a glass of beer

Ertan Beskardes is currently heading to Falmouth. Credit: Ertan Beskardes/PPL/GGR

‘Sailing alone is one of the last things I am worrying about,’ says Ertan Beskardes as he repairs and makes adjustments to his Rustler 36, Lazy Otter after an initial shakedown sail from Sardinia to Palma.

‘I don’t really know what the challenges will be. This adventure is a lot of firsts for me. If I have a problem, I will just deal with it,’ he says.

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‘My biggest worry is making sure the boat is up to scratch so it can sail as safely as possible,’ he adds.

Beskardes, who has sailed mostly solo, said his lack of Southern Ocean sailing experience is not something he is concerned about.

‘I know in life people only talk about the very best or the very worst. I read Robin Knox-Johnston’s book and he did not talk about days of terrible weather, just periods of bad weather. Southern Ocean sailing is not something that worries me.’

Gregor McGuckin – Ireland

The Irish entrant for the Golden Globe Race Gregor McGuckin on board his yacht

Gregor McGuckin has done long distance sailing before, but not solo. Credit: Gregor McGuckin/GGR/PPL

Despite no headline sponsor, Gregor McGuckin is confident about reaching the start line in his Biscay 36, Mary Luck.

He believes he has an advantage, having done all of the yacht’s refit work himself.

‘Everything has been taken apart and put back together, whether it needed it or not, so I have confidence in my own boat. I know her history, which will give me peace of mind when the conditions get rough as I know everything possible will have been done to prepare her and nothing will have been missed.’

McGuckin believes the isolation aboard will be his biggest challenge and is taking a library of sailing and non-sailing books.

‘I’ve done long-distance sailing before but not on my own, so I have been talking to other racers and sailors to help identify the challenges. It is about recognising in yourself when you are up and when you are down, and observing how you react,’ adds McGuckin, who like those who sailed before him (Knox-Johnston took a case of brandy, a case of scotch and 120 cans of lager when he took part), will take along a few bottles of Irish whiskey in store to ease the particularly bad days.