Tony Bullimore relives his upside down hell
Tony Bullimore, yachtsman and adventurer, took to the water at the Earls Court Boat Show to help demonstrate the correct use of a life raft.
When Tony’s racing yacht capsized during the Vendée Globe race in 1997 he survived in a tiny air pocket in the upturned hull. Hypothermia, dehydration and frostbite were telling him to die, but his determination and bulldog spirit kept him alive for nearly five days underneath his upturned hull.
Tony joined Steve Holmes from the Coastal Sea School to introduce the ‘life raft experience’ which is available free of charge to all visitors to the show.
Tony informed the crowd, “being in a life raft at the Whyte & Mackay Earls Court Boat Show is quite comfortable – not like in the Southern Ocean.”
Tony will be at the Earls Court Boat Show to launch his latest racing campaign: to challenge the non-stop single handed round the world sailing record held by Dame Ellen Macarthur. His aim is to break the record in under 70 days. In a career spanning 40 years, Tony has sailed more than 500,000 miles, crossed the Atlantic more than 40 times, and has won over 150 trophies. Tony was elected Yachtsman of the Year in 1985 for his outstanding achievements.
Tony will be at the show’s Survival Zone every day to meet with the public, to answer questions about his life as a racer and introduce exciting footage from his amazing survival. As Tony says, ‘Surviving in the ultimate storm in the southern ocean, in mountainous seas and winds blowing over 100 mph, in my capsized boat, is one thing. But being rescued by the Royal Australian Navy, in these ferocious conditions, sparking off the biggest ocean rescue the Royal Australian Navy had ever undertaken, is the stuff of heroes’.