Cornwall

Sam Goodchild prepares for Solitaire du Figaro solo race

Sam Goodchild
Image caption Sam Goodchild will take part in the solo race in June

Cornish sailor Sam Goodchild is preparing to compete in the Solitaire du Figaro.

Previously called the Course de l'Aurore, it is a single-handed race which has attracted solo rowers since it started in 1970.

Mr Goodchild, 22, is taking part in the race as part of his build-up to the next Vendee Globe solo round the world yacht race in 2016.

He won the class 40 section of the Caribbean 600 race in February.

The Solitaire du Figaro is one of a series of solo races, which Mr Goodchild hopes will give him the experience needed to reach his ultimate goal of the 2016 global race.

Mr Goodchild, who has been training in Falmouth in his 33ft (10m) boat, said: "It's very simple and light-weight, built for performance.

"It's solely the person on board that makes it go faster."

The Vendee Globe race, seen as one of the ultimate challenges for offshore skippers, involves sailing around the world from west to east via the three major capes of Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn.

Earlier this year, Mr Goodchild took part in the Caribbean 600 race, a 600-mile (966 km) route around the Caribbean taking in 11 islands.

The Figaro event starts in June taking in ports in France, Spain and Portugal.

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