Like so many great adventure stories, the Whitbread Round the World Race started in a pub, with a conversation between the Royal Naval Sailing Association and the head of the Whitbread Brewery.
Within a year or so, 17 crews were on the start line off Portsmouth, UK, for the first Whitbread Round the World Race in September 1973.
From that was born one of the greatest sporting events in the world. Check out the story of the first edition of what we now know as The Ocean Race.
The 1973–74 Whitbread Round the World Race, the first edition of this race, started off from Portsmouth, England on 8 September 1973. Seventeen yachts of various sizes and rigs took part. During the race three sailors were swept over board and died: Paul Waterhouse, Dominique Guillet and Bernie Hosking. Waterhouse and Guillet were never to be seen again.
The crew of the Mexican yacht Sayula II, a brand new Swan 65 owned and skippered by Mexican Captain Ramón Carlin, won the overall race in 133 days and 13 hours. Her actual time was 152 days. In 2016, this adventure was presented in a documentary film called The Weekend Sailor.