Retired Navy commander, 43 year old Abhilash Tomy, the renowned sailor and first Indian to complete a solo non stop voyage around the world in 2013, made history on Saturday by securing an outstanding second-place finish in the gruelling 2022 Golden Globe Race. Tomy‘s yacht, BAYANAT crossed the finish line at 06:46hr in Les Sables d’Olonne, France, after an intense 236-day 30,000mile journey around the globe. This incredible achievement is especially noteworthy given the numerous setbacks Tomy faced leading up to and during the race, making his triumph a true testament to his exceptional skill, determination, and perseverance.
In 2018, Abhilash Tomy experienced a catastrophic accident during his first attempt at the Golden Globe Race when a violent storm in the Indian Southern Ocean caused his yacht to roll, losing both masts and resulting in a broken back unable to move and trapped below. An international rescue effort followed and then major operations and rehabilitation before walking then sailing again. Undeterred by this harrowing experience, Tomy set his sights on returning to the GGR, displaying immense resilience and unwavering commitment to the dream.
Tomy‘s entry into the 2022 Golden Globe Race was fraught with challenges from the beginning. As the last participant to join the race he was pushed for time to prepare.He faced a collision with a ship just two weeks before the start, which severely damaged the bow of his yacht. Despite this significant obstacle and rushed Euro 50,000 repair, Tomy remained steadfast in his determination to complete the race. Once underway he was often struggling to cope with the memories of his 2018 accident, until he passed the spot in the ocean where it all happened. A huge weight lifted from his shoulders and in his mind and the world looked a better place!
Throughout the race, BAYANAT was beset by a series of breakdowns in his rigging and windpilot windvane. However, Abhilash Tomy earned the nickname “Mr Fixit” for his tireless efforts to keep his vessel afloat and on course. He demonstrated extraordinary resourcefulness and ingenuity, solidifying his reputation as one of the world’s leading sailors.
Ultimately, Tomy crossed the finish line just behind the winner, 39 year old South African sailor Kirsten Neuschäfer, who became the first woman ever to win a solo around-the-world yacht race. Their respective accomplishments have inspired sailors and sports enthusiasts worldwide, especially in Asia and the UAE showcasing the power of perseverance and determination in the face of adversity.
Abhilash Tomy‘s remarkable journey in the 2022 Golden Globe Race highlights his unwavering passion for sailing and his dedication to overcoming even the most challenging obstacles. We offer our heartfelt congratulations to him on his impressive second-place finish, the highest placing for any Asian sailor in any major sailing event. His success serves as an inspiration to aspiring sailors around the world.
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