Igor Zaretskiy (67)



Name Igor Zaretskiy

Born September 11th 1951

Nationality Russian

Country of entry Russia

Born and bred on the banks of the River Volga running through the Russian city of Yroslavl on its way to enter the Caspian Sea, Igor Zaretskiy is one of Russia’s most experienced international sailors. He has twice won the Russian ¼ Ton championship, competed in multiple RORC Caribbean races, and such classics as the Fastnet, Newport-Bermuda and Middle Sea races. In 2010 he won the Jester Challenge singlehanded transatlantic race, a feat that won him Russia’s Yachtsman of the Year title.

He says of the GGR: “Sailing around the world has been a dream since childhood. I knew about the first Sunday Times Golden Globe Race in 1968/9, and I am pleased to have the opportunity to take part 50 years later.”




Name Esmeralda
Type Endurance 35 Masthead ketch
Designer Peter Ibold
Builder Vicente Belliure (ESP)
LOA 35.00ft / 10.67m
LWL 26.67ft / 8.13m
Beam 10.75ft / 3.28m
Draft 5 5.75ft / 1.75m
Displacement 18550 lbs/ 8414 kgs
Sail area 736sq. ft / 68.37sq. m

Igor Zaretskiy has selected the Belliure Endurance 35 ketch Esmeralda to compete in the GGR. Supported by the magazine Yacht Russia, his team spent the 2017/18 winter preparing the yacht in the warmer climes of Spain. They took delivery of a new rig in February and planned to relaunch her at the beginning of March ready for Igor to sail first to the Azores before heading north to Falmouth as part of the yacht’s sail trials.

Skipper Updates

September 19th 2018 12:00 AM

“Hallo friends. Just got into the sleeping bag.On sunday had at least couple of hours of good stable weather. I managed to fix trysail bag to the mast. So it is always ready to put it out. Then I put down jib and put up trade-wind staysail. I always thought it works only with tail wind. On sunday evening got wind at about 8 and still the same. Today in the night was less wind and I prepared everything to work with this „twins“. Waited for calm weather, got it at 5 and worked till now. Right now it is at about 30 kts, but I turned at the right moment. 5 minutes after there was rain and gust came. I think 35. Right now everything works perfect and stable. During the storm everything has its own life, so have to clean up.”

September 19th 2018 12:00 AM

“Weather changes all the time, at some moment sun at some rain and everything is dark.Yes just lost the log whirl. So have to check speed by myself. But it is no problem. At any moment I will see sun I can find myself. I also have another log. But it shows only the distance. Will have to find out how to fix it on board.All the rest is good. Just have a lot of sails, ropes etc.I don´t even touch the steering wheel. Windpilot works absolutely fine.Vladimir asked about my thoughts. It will take to long. Right now to tired, will try to describe it next week. VHF works amazing. Have good contact to Cape Town right now. Everyday I get new weather forecast and it looks like it will blow for a long time now. Had to put this staysail way earlier, but who did even know. I saw it only on pictures. I think nobody can really explain all the subtlety of work with it. That is why all other guys are going so well. Just put it and started to get speed.So, will call you next week one more time.Greetings to everybody. All is fine here.”

September 12th 2018 12:00 AM

IGOR should cross the symbolic line of the Cape of Good Hope over the night in 9th position! Go Esmeralda Go!The Russian requested medical advice last week after being thrown across the cockpit and crashed against the liferaft. He was worried that he might have broken a rib or two but in stoical fashion, had no thought about stopping. Igor reported last week: “It’s blowing 25 knots for the third day in row, sometime 30, and the waves are now 4m high. At times an abnormal wave hits us on the beam sending everything flying across the saloon. It’s a total mess inside. I’m tidying up every evening just to start it all over again in the morning.”He was taped yesterday morning on the edge of a bubble without wind. Still south of Cape Town, Esmeralda has regained some speed and the gale that was to hit him is noticeably less bad than expected. He seems to want to move south, probably to escape strong currents from the south-east coast of Africa. He will benefit from several days downwind but could well be stuck this weekend .

September 11th 2018 12:00 AM

Happy Birthday Igor!!!

September 10th 2018 12:00 AM

IGOR ZARESTSKIY and MARK SINCLAIR, respectively 2600 and 2850 miles from the leader, are entangled (at respectively 1.5 and 2.2 knots) in a calm zone that should last until tomorrow evening, before it also generate headwinds … and then find some good downwinds. Igor #Zaretskiy (via satellite) ESMERALDA OK !

September 6th 2018 12:00 AM

Sat phone Part 1: “Hi my friends. I am somewhere at 36S 009E. blowing 25+ kts for the third day, sometimes 30 & waves 4.0 m. Genoa furled down to a tiny patch, 3 reefs on the main & 2 on the mizzen.Mostly smooth sailing, just at times an abnormal wave hit on the beam everything flying across the saloon. Total mess inside with this lumpy weathe. Tidy up just to start it all over again in the morning. No problems at the galley though, manage to cook and eat. Got drip, drip, drip coming through the ceiling, quite unpleasant. It’s come from the main-sheet traveler teak pads fastenings. The pads was lifted a bit when the traveller was ripping out. The leak is there. Waiting for a mild day to fix this. What else. Was smashed hard against the liferaft in the cockpit. Still uneasy feeling at seat and ribs. The course now is set to the Cape of Good Hope, about 500NM to go. A lot to be changed till then, I am with the cold front now. Puffy white clouds & a shiny sun now. Don’t know what comes behind it and how many squalls to expect.

September 6th 2018 12:00 AM

Sat phone Part 2 : The day before yesterday nearly missed a squall while seating at SSB with Capetown. I saw it from the porthole flying my way with the rain. Didn’t get a chance even to put oilies on. Jumped out, took three reefs, dropped the mizzen, furled the headsail. The boat weathered it ok. But still three oceans to cross, no point to get her in any trouble & push it. Plans drop the genoa & to hoist the working jib instead. But with such strong wind chances are high to have the geni overboard while dropping. Got to wait for the gap in the wind and to prepare some kind of makeshift lazy jacks.So this is it. The race still goes on. I see the Flying French have made enormous progress.I wonder what he was hiding under the skirt in Les Sables, it’s likely not just antifouling. This kind of boat can’t fly. All the rest are sailing in a pack, same design. Well, there’s still a lot ahead. Looking forward to Tasmania. That’s all. Wake up every other hour at nights to check everything. Nap now to catch what’s missing from night – and back to work. thanks for the meteo updates. “

August 29th 2018 12:00 AM

IGOR ZARETSKIY is moderately OK, always on the edge of this bubble of high pressure. It should soon hang a stripp of strong winds but will soon have to compose again with multiple high pressure areas, along his route…

August 15th 2018 12:00 AM

IGOR ZARETSKIY, getting a little closer every day with the eastern peloton led by ARE WIIG, is facing today a narrow strip of high pressure that could also block their way to the south. Igor becomes day by day a bit more popular with our followers, with his little English over his weekly sat phone calls, and his text messages “Esmeralda OK”s !

August 13th 2018 12:00 AM

Still “OK”, IGOR ZARETSKIY has come a little closer to the pack in recent days and should take advantage of good crosswinds for a few more days.

August 8th 2018 12:00 AM

“Esmeralda Ok ” as he would write!

August 2nd 2018 12:00 AM

IGOR was on a starboard tack late at night with the wind about 20 knots, waves 6 to 10 feet when he heard banging sound from the steering gear. Igor checked it and found a mechanical issue with a rotation limiter. The fault made it impossible to turn the boat with a wheel in that weather conditions, and it was quite rough to try to fix it. He had to stay on a starboard tack. When the sea state got more moderate Igor tacked with the help of the mizzen, not using the wheel. Then he managed to make a temporary fix for the steering gear, which involved angle grinder and some other tools he had the foresight to take onboard. Igor said it’s ok for now, and he has already shaped more permanent repair plan. he hopes it will not effect the voyage.

July 20th 2018 12:00 AM

Igor has maintained a mid field position within the fleet. He reported that his mainsheet system had exploded this week and through his well established HF radio link he developed a work around system with his shore team. He has the mainsail set again and is back at full strength.

July 18th 2018 12:00 AM

Igor is neck and neck with Uku but has taken the inshore route along the African coast. While he reports that all is OK on the Esmeralda there has been some damage to his mainsail and hopes to get it flying again this afternoon.

July 13th 2018 12:00 AM

Esmeralda charged around the bottom of Lanzarote coming in from the east. Ever the cheery Russian, Igor looked comfortable and very much at home onboard, as he chatted with officials, beer can in hand. A laceration to his arm wasn’t even mentioned in the excitement but tells us that for all his exuberance there have been some challenges aboard the Esmeralda. The Endurance 35 seems to have tracked well in what has been predominantly downwind conditions.

July 11th 2018 12:00 AM

Igor continues to maintain a position in the front half of the fleet. He has demonstrated his sailing ability and his report of sewing the spinnaker might indicate that he is pushing hard to keep up. His boat is one of the strongest in the fleet but how hard can he afford to push the Esmeralda?

July 6th 2018 12:00 AM

Igor sure knows how to sail

Igor’s Endurance 35 may not be everyone’s idea of a fast Golden Globe yacht but Igor sure knows how to sail the mighty Esmeralda. Light winds on start day saw them steaming away causing the Race Chairman to go and check he was not motoring. While not at the front he is performing well. Igor is clearly a talented and experienced sailor and one to watch as the race develops.

May 3rd 2018 12:00 AM

Russian entrant Igor Zaretskiy has been making waves both at home at in Alicante, Spain where is Endurance 35 Esmeralda was launched last week. Team spokesman Rasim Poloskin reports: “Igor has just held a press conference in Moscow which has generated a lot of publicity. Igor has now spent a few hours at sea checking sails, wind vane system and his HF radio installation and managed to speak to a radio station 3,000K. away. This highlighted some issues with the sails, which have now gone back to the sailmaker for adjustment, and this week he will complete his jury rig and emergency steering tests. Then he will set sail for Les Sables d’Olonne and onward to Falmouth to arrive on June 11 for the Suhaili festivities.”

April 5th 2018 12:00 AM

Russian entrant Igor Zaretskiy is now in the final phase of preparing his Endurance 35 Esmeralda ready to re-launch in Alicante Spain later this week. Team spokesman Rasim Poloskin reports: “The boat refit has fallen behind the schedule, but finally we have our new sails and the yacht has been re-rigged. We are now working on the emergency tiller and jury rig system. “Igor is now taking a crash course on HF communication and Our Facebook followers are helping him with this. They have already get in contact with Terre & Mer Ham radio community, and are also trying to organise a Russian speaking HAM network around the Globe. Igor’s English is still an issue. So we are working out how to get a bit more than just position and weather reports from him for our Russian audience.Once launched, Igor will complete his jury rig trials then sail from Alicante to Les Sables d’Olonne and on to Falmouth for the Suhaili 50 Parade of sail celebrations.

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