The story of Donald Crowhurst, who tried to fake sailing around the world in 1968

Originally published at:

The Crowhurt story is incidentally covered in a quite enjoyable book primarily about another person in the race, who genuinely did solo nonstop around the world in a sailboat.

Although, the most interesting person in the book was neither the successful sailor nor Crowhurst, but rather a third contender who made it almost all the way, then decided the race was stupid and sailed off in search of a tropical paradise.


Thanks for confirming that this was the same dude. (I was too lazy to go into my garage and look for that book.) It is an excellent read and I agree with you about the most curious of competitors.:thumbsup:

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I believe that during one of the Oxford and Cambridge boat races the race had to be abandoned briefly for bad weather but restarting was delayed finding one of the rowers, who when discovered explained that “he had spotted a chum in the crowd”. Apologies if this isn’t exactly correct.
My belief is that most forms of activity on water encourage introspection and philosophy, so this kind of behaviour is only to be expected. The 100M sprint, on the other hand, doesn’t allow time for that sort of thing.


puzzle over a computer that turns on the radio.


Yes what I curious race (i’ve just spent far too much time on wikipedia). Another strange competitor was Nigel Tetley.

See also the wonderful (and creepy) documentary Deep Water.

For a moment I thought, yes, what is the connection between yacht racing and tea names - Lipton, Tetley - and then I thought oh yes, I do know - one of my wife’s ancestors was an officer on the Cutty Sark.
(I don’t know if Nigel Tetley was related to the tea family, but it struck me as coincidental.)
In a sense Crowhurst’d dishonesty brought about Tetley’s death.

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