Kojiro Shiraishi, the first Asian sailor to finish a Vendée Globe


Kojiro Shiraishi arrives, the first Asian sailor to finish a Vendée Globe

At 11:52 am on Thursday, February 11, Kojiro Shiraishi crossed the finish line of the ninth edition of the Vendée Globe, in 16th position. He becomes the first Asian sailor to complete a regatta around the world. The fulfillment of a dream that he had ended prematurely in 2016 following his decommissioning in the Indian Ocean … and that could have ended when his mainsail broke just 6 days after departure.

Kojiro Shiraishi arrived at 11:52 a.m. on Thursday, February 11, after 94 days, 21 hours, 32 minutes and 56 seconds at sea. The Japanese skipper completes his first round the world tour and becomes the first Asian sailor to complete a Vendée Globe. . ” It is an honor! , she wrote in her last message on board. What makes me most happy is that when you search for my name on the Internet in Japan, the first thing you find is the Vendée Globe. I managed to publicize this wonderful race in Japan and I am very proud of that. ”

In this same message, the navigator was delighted with the battle that was being fought in recent days between Arnaud Boissières, Alan Roura, Stéphane Le Diraison, Pip Hare and him.
“It’s great to play this game at 5! Arnaud (Boissières) is sailing very well, super fast, I would like to know how he is doing. ”
But the Japanese have not always been so enthusiastic. Victim of damage to the mainsail only 6 days after departure (the mainsail broke on the second slat and some slats broke after 3 involuntary gybes caused by pilot problems), Kojiro Shiraishi was forced to give the around the world with a damaged ship. This foiler, built from Charal’s molds and prepared by the Roland Jourdain Kaïros team, nonetheless allowed him to make a magnificent comeback. After more than a week of repairs, DMG’s Mori skipper was left in the race for 31st place. Today Arnaud Boissières finished in 16th place in a few hours. “Going up to 15-16th is great. If I finish this Vendée Globe with this broken mainsail, it will be a great miracle,” he said two days ago. So there are miracles!
In 2016, the one with Yuko Tada (the first Japanese to win a race on the high seas) as a mentor was forced to withdraw following his dismay in the Indian Ocean. This February 11, 2021, she finally wraps up her world tour at age 53, offering a great lesson in resilience.

Race time: 94 days, 21 hours, 32 minutes and 56 seconds
Deviation from the first: 14 days 17 hours 48 minutes and 10 seconds
Distance traveled in the great circle: 24,365.74 at an average speed of 10.70 knots
Ground clearance: 29,067.67 miles at an average speed of 12.76 knots