Legendary maxi trimaran IDEC named 'Qingdao China'

Updated: 2015-03-31 16:41


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PARIS - Chinese skipper Guo Chuan, who holds the world solo circumnavigation record of Class 40 monohul, renamed his recently acquired IDEC Trimaran as "Qingdao China" at La Trinite sur Mer, France on Monday.

Two weeks ago, also at the French harbor, the Mecca of offshore sailing, Guo represented the maxi trimaran's new owner based in Qingdao to take over it from the former skipper Francis Joyon.

Renamed after Guo's birthplace Qingdao, a leading sailing city on China's eastern coast, the former French boat is legendary for holding four world records, including one of the most prestigious marks created by captain Joyon in 2008 when he piloted it to world's fastest solo non-stop circumnavigation record of just over 57 days.

This is the third Qingdao sailboat that the 50-year-old Guo has skippered.

In November 2012, Guo set sail in a Class 40 Akilaria monohull named Qingdao to complete a solo non-stop circumnavigation and returned to Qingdao in 138 days, triumphantly creating a new world record.

Guo's first Qingdao boat carried his mission as an Olympic messenger in 2004 to 2005 along the Chinese coastal line to promote the city's commissioning as the sailing venue of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

"I owe my sailing achievements to the support from Qingdao city and am proud of naming the Trimaran after my birthplace," Guo said. "My mission is to achieve a new world record for Qingdao with this trimaran."

The 50-year-old Qingdao native has been planning to conquer a new routine of the Maritime Silk Road later this year, following Zheng He's footprints 610 years ago in commanding expeditionary voyages after navigating across the Arctic Ocean for new record.

Joyon, who has been training with the Chinese skipper over the past three weeks, hailed Guo's objective and ambition.

"With the Qingdao boat becoming ever bigger, so is Guo Chuan's ambition to his next sailing," said the Frenchman. "I am glad to see his skills are quickly growing to match that ambition."

A congratulatory message from the Qingdao government indicated the city's pride of becoming the country's leading city of sailing.

"Qingdao city hosted the sailing events of the 2008 Olympic Games. The naming of 'Qingdao China' is not only a great continuation of the Olympic legacy but also the city's contribution to China's sailing adventures," read the message.