Eric Tabarly

Eric Tabarly



Eric Tabarly (1931-1998) was a French sailor and hero of the sea. He was born on August 9, 1931 in Nantes, France, to a family of naval officers, and quickly developed a passion for sailing at a young age.

As a teenager, he joined the French Navy, serving as a navigator on the submarine Sfax. He then went on to complete a degree in engineering from the Ecole Navale in Brest. After graduation, he began his sailing career, completing several long-distance voyages and competing in many races.

Tabarly’s most famous voyage was his single-handed circumnavigation of the world in 1964. He sailed alone for seven months and four days, covering more than 25,000 miles. His voyage was a success, and he became a national hero in France, receiving the Legion of Honor and numerous other awards.

Tabarly continued to sail and race competitively throughout his life. In 1968, he won the first-ever solo transatlantic race, crossing from Plymouth, England, to Newport, Rhode Island. He also won the first-ever solo round-the-world race in 1976. He entered the event with a boat he designed, the Pen Duick, which was named after the sea god Pen Duick.

In addition to his sailing career, Tabarly was also an author and filmmaker. He wrote several books about sailing, including La Mer Est Ma Terre (The Sea Is My Home) and Eric Tabarly: Une Vie Dans La Mer (Eric Tabarly: A Life at Sea). He also created several documentaries about sailing, including A Vide De Mer (Empty Sea) and L’Odyssée De Tabarly (The Odyssey of Tabarly).

Tabarly passed away in 1998 at the age of 67, after falling overboard from his boat while sailing off the coast of Ireland. He was posthumously awarded the French Legion of Honor in a ceremony at the Naval Academy in Brest.

Eric Tabarly was an inspirational figure in France and around the world. He was a passionate sailor who dedicated his life to the sea, and his achievements will be remembered for generations to come.

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