Sailing: Golding stays upbeat over third place

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The Independent Online

A major win still eludes Mike Golding but the British singlehander, this time sailing with a crew, was just about satisfied with the third place he took at the end of the 1,850-mile Calais Round Britain Race yesterday.

The winner, Vincent Riou, in Michel Desjoyeaux's Vendee Globe-winning PRB, crossed the finish line at the French port near midnight last night with Roland Jourdain's Sill an hour and 43 minutes behind and Golding's Ecover less than 48 minutes behind Jourdain.

"We are really pleased with our podium finish and it was such a great and close race because it was extremely tactical," said Golding on the dock. "I think we sailed the boat really well. It's the second oldest boat in the fleet [of nine] so we had to push 100 per cent of the time to keep up with the younger generation boats."

There is only one more race in the programme for this Open 60, which is expected to be sold to France. That is the Fastnet Race, which begins from Cowes on 10 August when most of the current crew - Brian Thompson, Miranda Merron, Graham Turrell and Bruno Dubois - are expected to be on board again.

Golding takes delivery of the new, New Zealand-built, Merfyn Owen-designed Ecover at the end of August. Its first race will be the two-handed Jacques Vabre from Le Havre to Bahia de Salvador, Brazil, in November.