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Race France to France: Leave Antarctica to Starboard: An American in the Vendée Globe, Racing Solo, Non-Stop, Around the World Paperback – September 7, 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 50 customer reviews

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Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
The bestselling author of "Encyclopedia an Ordinary Life" returns with a literary experience that is unprecedented, unforgettable, and explosively human. Hardcover | Kindle book
$15.00 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rich grew up in Boston and learned how to sail as a young boy. He earned an AB degree from Harvard, an SM degree from MIT, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He recently received an Honorary Doctorate in Public Administration from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, with the citation: “For his distinguished sailing career and his dedication to educating schoolchildren worldwide.” He’s been a math teacher in the Boston Public Schools, a defense analyst in Washington DC working on B-52s and cruise missiles, and he worked at Wind Ship Development. He also has served as Trustee of two, college-level, in the field, accredited science semesters: Sea Education Association in Woods Hole; and The School for Field Studies in Beverly, Massachusetts. Along the way, he continued sailing, becoming the youngest winning skipper of the Newport-Bermuda Race in 1980 aboard the 42’ ketch Holger Danske. In the early 1990s, Rich founded sitesALIVE!, which became his true passion. sitesALIVE! creates school programs that connect K12 classrooms to adventures and expeditions worldwide. Says Rich: “Excite a kid with bats, bugs, and snakes in the rainforest, or with gales, flying fish, and dolphins at sea, and they will pay attention, not knowing what will happen next. Then the science, geography, and math flow freely.” By his program voyages (3 world records on clipper ship routes, San Francisco - Boston, New York - Melbourne, and Hong Kong - New York), as well as 70 content-providing partnerships with accredited field schools worldwide, sitesALIVE! has produced 75 full semester, live, interactive programs for K12. Following this mission, a primary objective of sailing the Vendée Globe was to create a global school program off that uniquely global ocean event. Rich has won: - the 2001 Innovators in Education Award from the Newspaper Association of America Foundation - the SuperAchievers’ Award from the American Lung Association - the Blue Water Medal from the Cruising Club of America - and the Lowell Thomas Award from The Explorers Club.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 334 pages
  • Publisher: sitesALIVE! (September 7, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615666566
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615666563
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #890,719 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By N. Kennedy on December 14, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Rich Wilson's book is a new addition to the canon of great adventure stories. It appeals to sailors and non-sailors alike because of how clearly Rich explains the sailing aspects of the adventure - not too technical but complete enough to convey how big and scary this challenge is, truly an Everest-scale undertaking. For those familiar with mountaineering, the Vendee Globe is really more analogous to a K2 expedition - very few succeed. A key point with the Vendee Globe Race is that participation is fundamentally an attempt. Rich Wilson is not only a first-time competitor but the only American and at 58, the oldest skipper. He perseveres while fellow Vendee Globe veteran racers with newer boats fall prey to storms, breakdowns and accidents and drop out, one after another. This is a classic story of sophisticated planning, ingenuity, grit and resilience. Rich provides a vivid description of challenges he faces with candor, passion and even humor. The book is a must-read as a gripping adventure and an inspiring story of a remarkable man.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this as a Xmas gift for my dad, who's a big fan of nautical adventure stories and an engineer who enjoys the technical side of sailing. He's been gushing about how great and amazing this book is - and about a race he's never heard of before. The adventures the author went through sound absolutely mind boggling - to sail solo around the world, and in a race. He's now sharing it with all his buddies. He's going to mail it to me after it makes the rounds so I can read it, too.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the most exiting books I have read in a very long time. Even though I haven't sailed a boat for twenty-five years, Wilson's gripping descriptions of his single-handed non-stop race around the world put me squarely inside the boat beside him. I could almost feel the pain when he broke his ribs early in the race, and I actually got vertigo reading about his 65 foot climb up the mast to make repairs. Whether he was alone at sea for weeks during an endless and savage series of storms, or enduring injuries, or fighting sleeplessness at every turn, Wilson's true tales about his adventure are sure to keep readers riveted.

But the most refreshing point for me was his reason for making this grueling journey. Wilson had arranged in advance to speak to thousands of school kids from around the globe online every day right in their own classrooms. In this way, they could participate in an amazing real-life event while simultaneously learning about everything from marine biology, history, and technology to geography, weather systems, navigation--and the extreme sport of racing sailboats single-handed off-shore.

This book is a must read about one man's struggle against the odds, not for riches or fame, but to provide an exciting learning experience for kids thru virtual participation in a three month, round the world solo sailing race.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There are passages in this book that will leave you breathless! I was one of the fortunate sailors in Rich Wilson's crew in the 1980 Newport-Bermuda Race. In that race, he devised an innovative strategy that led to a small boat's victory over the monsters of ocean racing. But that was just the beginning of Rich's career of amazing achievements in sailing. In this book, the reader is taken aboard as Rich completes the most grueling of all sailing races - an unimaginable solo race around the world. Along the way, he weaves into the story his own evolution as a sailor, the preparation for this feat, giving the reader a sense of the fear, the danger, the support of the family of ocean racers, and the jubilation of accomplishing the inconceivable. An important part of the story is his conception and nurturing of sitesAlive!, a web-based educational offering that takes students with him, real-time, on these voyages, giving them a riveting course on geography, technology, mathematics, problem-solving, and much, much more. Don't miss this one!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well written account of a solo around the world sailboat race. The author spends a significant number of pages in flashbacks and talking about the importance of the educational aspects of the group that his race supported. Not as technical as some sailing books I've read, but still fulfilling to serious sailors. A very inspirational story
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Format: Kindle Edition
I have had the good fortune not only to read Rich Wilson's book but over the last few years I have gotten to know the man himself. I have been on a calm day sail in Maine on the Vendee Globe racing boat, been to Rich Wilson's lectures and watched his video of the race. I can't imagine what it was like - even after the video. The only 15 minutes of his epic voyage that I think I might have had the courage to enjoy was his triumphant return to France,

The book brings his experience to LIFE- BUY IT
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a book reminiscent of Gypsy Moth Circles the World - compelling, informative and a well-crafted adventure story with a similar low key and self deprecating voice. Having worked with Rich for several years to support the mission of the Sea Education Association, I know how committed he is to connecting people with the ocean. While sharing the successes of his sitesALIVE Foundation educational outreach effort, he also conveys his true passion for sailing in the most extreme conditions. His writing puts in perspective the extraordinary men and women who compete in the Vendee Globe, and allows us to glimpse the rush of adrenaline unique to the waters around Cape Horn. Tres bien fait Rich!!
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