Pete Goss is a West Countryman and former Royal Marine who is no stranger to adventure. The 2006 Two-handed Round Britain and Ireland Yacht Race is a return to competitive sailing for him and the latest of numerous seafaring adventures, having previously competed in six transatlantic and two Round-the-World races.
The most recognised of these was the 1996/7 Vendee Globe non-stop single-handed round the world yacht race in his Open 50 yacht 'Aqua Quorum'. It was this race which turned Pete into a national hero for the dramatic rescue of fellow competitor Raphael Dinelli in hurricane-force winds. Pete was awarded the MBE by HM The Queen and the Legion d'Honneur by the French President.
Pete’s other sailing exploits include training and leading a previously inexperienced crew of fourteen through what is generally held to be ‘the worlds toughest yacht race’ – the British Steel Challenge (now known as the Global Challenge) The route goes the ‘wrong way’ around the World, against the prevailing winds and currents. Pete, having spent three years as training manager for the whole fleet of amateurs proudly went on to lead his own team aboard Hofbrau into third place.
In 1988 he defied convention by finishing second in class in the Carlsberg Single handed Transatlantic Race, sailing ‘Cornish Meadow’, a tiny catamaran just 26 feet in length. This was Pete’s first fully-sponsored project, which he used to prove that small, lightweight multi-hulls can be viable giant-killers by coming in ahead of many larger craft.
More recently Pete gathered together the team and sponsors that enabled the construction of the World-famous giant catamaran 'Team Philips' – this was a five year project that ended with the sad loss of the boat, but thankfully not the crew, in a freak mid-Atlantic storm in December 2000.
Like all of Pete’s projects Team Philips rested on the four legs of Innovation, Technology, Challenge and Adventure. ‘Dare to Dream’ was the project’s strap line as it challenged many norms including a spirit of community and openness. The Project visitor centre, which was free to enter in keeping with the ethos of the project, saw some 1.2 million visitors. The website generated 97 million hits of which 76% were outside the UK.
Education played a big part touching all area’s of the curriculum and is best illustrated by the schools music competition. Three finalists were selected out of a national entry to be rewritten into band format. When the Queen named the boat the Royal Marines Band marched up and down, but they were playing the music written by the children.
As Pete always said: ‘The definition of an adventure is that it has an unknown outcome and ours was not to be. The real measure though, is that if at the end of all this we have encouraged one youngster to go that extra mile, then it will have all been worth while’;
and it was.
Pete is the author of the best-selling book about his yachting adventures – ‘Close to the Wind’. He lives in Cornwall and is married to Tracey, with whom he has three children.
Source : his own website