Sailor Abhilash Tomy completes prestigious circumnavigation Golden Globe Race

Thiruvananthapuram, Apr 29 (PTI) Commander Abhilash Tomy, a solo circumnavigator from Kerala, scripted history on Saturday by becoming the first Indian to complete the prestigious Golden Globe Race 2022.

A retired Indian Navy officer, Tomy finished second in the race, a solo around-the-world sailing competition that started on September 4, 2022, from Les Sables-d’Olonne in France.

South African Kirsten Neuschafer emerged first on Thursday in the 2022 Golden Globe Race.

“#GGR2022 2nd Arrival Abhilash Tomy (43) / India / Rustler 36 – “BAYANAT”, finished his 2nd solo around the world,” according to the official announcement made by the organisers on their Facebook page.

“Abhilash Tomy / Bayanat crossed the finish line at 0446 UTC, finished his 2nd time solo non stop around the world journey, he at 2nd in #GGR2022 Race. He thanks Les Sables, and his sponsor Bayanat.AI. Congratulation Abhilash!!!,” Golden Globe Race 2022 tweeted.

Later, he returned to the famous Les Sables d’Olonne channel, from where he started the race, to complete all the formalities related to the adventurous event and to receive a grand reception on its shore.

Tomy, who spent 236 days alone on the high seas, told the audience that he was exhausted and looking forward to taking three days of rest.

The sailor said before he started, he had presciently told his team that he would finish second in the race.

He had purchased a Rustler 36 yacht in France, and named it ‘Bayanat’. It had previously been used for the race in the last Golden Globe by sailor Philippe Péché.

Tomy was an entrant in the 50th anniversary edition of the Golden Globe, which started from Les Sables d’Olonne France on July 1, 2018 but he had met with an accident when he was in third position in that year’s race.

His boat was damaged in a storm, and he suffered a severe injury to his spine in the unfortunate incident after successfully spending 82 days on the high seas.

The naval officer was rescued following complex international efforts. Tomy was hailed for his bravery in surviving after being severely injured during the arduous Golden Globe circumnavigation race.

It was in March last year during the Dubai Expo 2020 where Tomy announced that he would be participating in the 2022 solo sailboat race around the world.

Bayanat, a company specialising in AI-powered geospatial intelligence, was his sponsor.

“I will be taking part in the Golden Globe Race 2022 on the Bayanat. It is a big thing for me and here is why,” the sailor had announced on his Facebook page, recalling his experience after his boat was dismasted and destroyed in a storm in the southern Indian Ocean while participating in 2018.

Navy Chief Admiral R Hari Kumar and Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal V R Chaudhari congratulated Tomy for his achievement.

“Adm R Hari Kumar #CNS and all personnel of #IndianNavy congratulate Cdr Abhilash Tomy, KC, NM (retd) on making #India proud, finishing 2nd in the @ggr2022, the world’s most gruelling ocean sailing race using tools & aids replicating the limitations of the first race in 1968,” Indian Navy said in a tweet.

In its tweet, Indian Air Force said: “Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari and all #IAF air warriors congratulate Cdr Abhilash Tomy for a stupendous performance. His performance has been a true display of resilience, grit & determination”.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan also congratulated Tomy for the outstanding performance, saying he has made the country and the state proud.

“Congratulations to @abhilashtomy for charting history as the first Indian & Asian to finish as runner-up of the #GGR2023, a solo around-the-world sailing race. You’ve made our country and Kerala proud with this glorious achievement. Best wishes for all your endeavours in future,” the Chief Minister tweeted.

Source: PTI News


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