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Following the memorable encounter with Sir Chris Bonington in 2017, we meet another of Britain’s great adventurers. Sir Robin Knox-Johnston burst to fame when he became the first man ever to complete a single-handed, non-stop circumnavigation of the world. Now, 50 years on from that famous voyage, he joins us in Petworth to talk about his extraordinary life story.
Following time with the Royal Naval Reserve and in the merchant navy, Knox-Johnston spied for the British government in the Gulf, worked in the South African dockyards, and built his famous boat Suhaili in Bombay. In June 1968, he set sail in Suhaili in the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, and his new autobiography Running Free vividly brings to life that remarkable voyage, where he was the only person to finish the race, completing his journey on 22 April 1969. He completed a second solo circumnavigation of the globe in 2007 aged 68, thus becoming the oldest to complete this feat.
Robin Knox-Johnston was born in 1939. He continues to sail and works as executive chairman of Clipper Ventures to introduce people to competitive sailing.