Skip to main content

VIDEO: For inspiration, Jules Verne

Two high-tech, oversize trimarans are racing around the globe, attempting to complete the fastest sailboat circumnavigation on record and capture the Jules Verne Trophy.

The 131-foot Spindrift 2 and 104-foot IDEC Sport on Nov. 22 crossed the imaginary start line that runs from Créac’h lighthouse (Ushant island, France) to Lizard Point (England) for the start of their crewed non-stop circumnavigation.

Both vessels are designed and built to beat sailing speed records as they challenge current holder Banque Populaire V, which circled the globe in 2011 in 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes, 53 seconds.

Take a look at Spindrift 2 cutting across the Atlantic toward the equator, then leaving the capes of Good Hope, Leeuwin and Horn to port.

The Jules Verne Trophy is a prize for the fastest circumnavigation of the world by any type of yacht with no restrictions on the size of crew.

The name of the award is a reference to Verne’s novel Around the World in Eighty Days, in which the fictional character Phileas Fogg traverses the planet by railroad and steamboat.

Both Spindrift 2 and IDEC Sport, which departed two hours earlier, took advantage of exceptional weather conditions to cover the 3,171 nautical miles between Ushant island and the equator about a day ahead of the record pace.

Here’s a tracker showing both teams.