Ellen MacArthur

Dame Ellen Patricia MacArthur , DBE (born 8 August 1976) is a retired British sailor, from Whatstandwell near Matlock in Derbyshire, now based in Cowes , Isle of Wight.

MacArthur is a successful solo long-distance yachtswoman . On 7 February 2005 she broke the world record for the fastest solo circumnavigation of the globe , a feat welke gained re International Renown. [2] Francis Joyon , the Frenchman who had held the record voordat MacArthur, Recovering the record again in early 2008, beating MacArthur’s record at nearly the two weeks. [3] Following re Retirement from professional sailing on 2 September 2010, MacArthur announced the launch of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation , a charity dat works with business and education to versnellen the transition to a circular economy .

Early life

MacArthur was born in Derbyshire where she lived with re parents, who in later zowel teachers, and two brothers Fergus and Lewis, who now live in Pennsylvania. She acquired re early interest in sailing, firstly to re desire to re emulation idol at the time, Sophie Burke, and secondly by reading Arthur Ransome ‘s Swallows and Amazons series of books. She has since Become the Patron of the Nancy Blackett Trust [4] welke owns and operates Ransome’s yacht, Nancy Blackett .

Her first experience of sailing was on a boat owned by re Aunt Thea MacArthur on the east coast of England. She saved re school dinner money for three years to buy re first boat, an eight-foot dinghy, welke she named Threp’ny Bit even though decimalisation had tasks place voordat she was born. She sellotaped a real ‘threepenny bit “coin forbidden the bow.

MacArthur attended Wirksworth County Infants and Junior Schools and the Anthony Gell School and ook worked at a sailing school in Hull . [5] When she was 17, MacArthur Bought a Corribee and named it Iduna ; she DESCRIBED the first time she saw it as “love at first sight”. In 1995 she sailed Iduna single-handed on a circumnavigation of Great Britain.

In 1997 she finished 17th in the Mini Transat solo transatlantic race after fitting out re 21 ft (6.4 m) Classe Mini yacht Le Poisson herself while living in a French boatyard.

She was named 1998 British Telecom / Royal Yachting Association “Yachtsman of The Year” in the UK and ‘Sailing’s Young Hope “in France.

Asteroid 20043 Ellenmacarthur is named after re. [6]

Racing career

MacArthur first cameramen to general Prominence in 2001-when she cameramen second in the Vendee Globe solo round-the-world sailing race in her Owen Clarke / Rob Humphreys designed Kingfisher (named after re sponsors, Kingfisher plc ), and subsequently MacArthur was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for services to sport. At 24, she was the youngest competitor to complete the voyage. [7]

In 2003 she captained a round-the-world record attempt for a crewed yacht in Kingfisher 2 (a catamaran formerly owned by Bruno Peyron and known as Orange ), but was thwarted by a broken mast in the Southern Ocean .

Ellen MacArthur on re arrival in 2005

A trimaran named B & Q / Castorama (after two companies in the Kingfisher group) Unveiled in January 2004 Specially was designed by Nigel Irens and Benoit Cabaret for re to break solo records. The 75-foot (23m) trimaran was built in Australia, with many of the components specifiek Arranged to take into account ‘MacArthur’s 5-foot 2-inch (1:57 m) height.

Using the yacht, re first significant record attempt in 2004 to break the west-east transatlantic crossing time failed to around one and a quarter hours, after about seven days or sailing.

She Began re attempt to break the solo record for sailing non-stop around the world on 28 November 2004. During re circumnavigation, she set records for the fastest solo voyage to the equator , fits the Cape of Good Hope , fits Cape Horn and back to the equator again. She crossed the finishing line near the French coast at Ushant at 22:29 UTC on 7 February 2005 beating the previous record set by French sailor Francis Joyon at 1 day, 8 hours, 35 minutes, 49 seconds. Her time of 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes 33 seconds is world record for the 27.354 nautical miles (50.660 km) recovered. This is an average speed of 15.9 knots (29.4 km / h).

On 8 February 2005 volgende re return to England, it was announced dat she was to be made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in recognition or re achievement. [8] It is believed dat she is the youngest ever recipient of this honor. Coming redacteuren after the event being Recognised, Rather dan Appearing in due course in the New Year’s or Birthday Honours lists , this recognition was reminiscent of braces to post bestowed upon Francis Drake and Francis Chichester als reaching home Shores after hun respective circumnavigations in 1580 and 1967. MacArthur was ook granted the rank of Honorary Lieutenant Commander , Royal Naval Reserve on the composition day.

In recognition of re achievement she was appointed a Knight (Chevalier) of the French Legion of Honour by President Nicolas Sarkozy , in March 2008. She is a French speaker effluent. [9]

In 2007 MacArthur headed up BT Team Ellen, a three-person sailing team welke of includes Australian Nick Moloney and Frenchman Sebastien Josse. [10]

In October 2009 MacArthur announced re Intention to retire from competitive racing to concentrate on the subject of resource and energy use in the global economy. [11]

On 2 September 2010, she launched the Ellen MacArthur Foundation , a charity which focuses on accelerating the transition to a Regenerative circular economy . The Foundation works in three areas:

  • Education – inspiring a generation to re-think the future
  • Business – catalysing business innovation
  • Insight – the opportunity for a re-design revolution [12]


In June 2000, MacArthur sailed the monohull Kingfisher from Plymouth , UK to Newport, Rhode Island , USA in 14 days, 23 hours, 11 minutes. This is the current record for a single-handed woman monohull east-to-west passage, and ook the record for a single-handed woman ‘any vessel. [13]

MacArthur’s second place in the 2000-2001 edition of the Vendee Globe, with a time of 94 days, 4 hours and 25 minutes, is the world record for a single-handed, non-stop, monohull circumnavigation by a woman. [14]

In June 2004 MacArthur sailed re trimaran B & Q / Castorama from Ambrose Light , Lower New York Bay, USA to Lizard Point, Cornwall , UK in 7 days, 3 hours, 50 minutes. This set a new world record for a transatlantic crossing in women, beating the previous record crewed as well as the singlehanded version. [15]

In 2005, MacArthur beat Francis Joyon’s bestaande world record for a single-handed non-stop circumnavigation . MacArthur in the trimaran B & Q / Castorama sailed 27.354 nautical miles (50.660 km) at an average speed of 15.9 knots . [16] Her time of 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes 33 seconds beat Joyon’s record-then world time by 1 day, 8 hours, 35 minutes and 49 seconds. She had no morethan 20 minutes drag at a time prolongation the voyage, keeping to be on constant lookout day and night. On 23 November 2007 Joyon set off in IDEC 2 in an attempt to beat MacArthur’s current world record for a single-handed circumnavigation. He Achieved his goal in 57 days, 13 hours 34 minutes and 6 seconds. [3] Some questioned Whether the technology at MacArthur’s Disposal somehow lessened re achievement but Robin Knox-Johnston still DESCRIBED it as an “amazing achievement”. [17]


MacArthur’s tearful video diaries recording the sailing adversities she faced inspired the caricature or re on the BBC satirical comedy show Dead Ringers . In Episode 5 or Series 1 or a BBC Sci-fi sitcom, hyperdrive , a MacArthur-like character, Clare Winchester, a round-the-galaxy solo spacewoman played will at Sally Phillips is parodied with references to video diaries, a diminishing grip on reality and friendlessness.

Popular culture

MacArthur was ook the last record holder on Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car on the BBC’s Top Gear television driving programs Until the eighth series, als the car and rules ulcers changed, and previous records ulcers removed. [18] The competition was a timed lap or a Racetrack in a Suzuki Liana . She COMPLETED the cloth in 1 minute 46.7 seconds, beating Jimmy Carr at 0.2 seconds. MacArthur won Top Gear ‘ s Fastest Driver of the Year award in 2005.

She’ll be took part in 2011 TV series Jamie’s Dream School .


In 2002, MacArthur released re first Autobiography entitled Taking on the World . In September 2010, she published a second Autobiography entitled Full Circle . She’ll be wrote an Autobiography entitled “Race Against Time”


Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust

Main article: Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust

In 2003, MacArthur set up the Ellen MacArthur Trust (now the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust), a registered charity, to take young people, aged tussen 8 and 24 inclusive, sailing to help them regain hun confidence on hun way to recovery from cancer, leukemia and other serious illnesses. [19]

In 2008 MacArthur joined forces with other sports celebrities to launch an appeal to raise £ 4 million for the Rainbows Children’s Hospice. The aim is to give terminally ill young people hun eigen customized sleeping unit to enable children in separate age groups to port hun families stay with them. [20]

Ellen MacArthur Foundation

Main article: Ellen MacArthur Foundation

After retiring from sailing, MacArthur founded the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, with the aim to versnellen the transition to a Regenerative, circular economy.


  1. Jump up^ “Dame Ellen MacArthur” . Desert Island Discs . 4 October 2009. BBC Radio 4 . Retrieved 18 January 2014 .
  2. Jump up^ Our Amazing Planet Staff (30 April 2012). “8 Unsung Women Explorers”. LiveScience.com . Retrieved 30 April 2012 .
  3. ^ Jump up to:a b “report or MacArthur congratulating Joyon on beating re record” . BBC News. 20 January 2008 . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  4. Jump up^ “The Nancy Blackett Trust – Arthur Ransome’s Nancy Blackett” . Nancyblackett.org . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  5. Jump up^ Daily MailWeekend Interview. 20 May 2012, p6
  6. Jump up^ http://www.ipa.nw.ru/PAGE/DEPFUND/LSBSS/ALF/21.htm(now moved tohttp://www.ipa.nw.ru/PAGE/FUNDAMENTAL/LSBSS/englenam. htm)
  7. Jump up^ Grice, Elizabeth (21 August 2010). “Ellen MacArthur:” i can not live with the sea ANY tomorrow ‘ ‘ . The Telegraph . Retrieved 6 March 2015 .
  8. Jump up^ The London Gazette : no. 57557. p. 1713 . 11 February 2005. Retrieved 16 August 2008.
  9. Jump up^ Samuel Henry (18 March 2008). “Nicolas Sarkozy to honor Ellen MacArthur” . The Daily Telegraph . London . Retrieved 1 May 2010 .
  10. Jump up^ “Team Ellen ‘ . Team Ellen . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  11. Jump up^ “Yachtswoman Dame Ellen to retire” . BBC News. 4 October 2009 . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  12. Jump up^ “About the Ellen MacArthur Foundation” . Ellen MacArthur Foundation . Retrieved 25 April 2013 .
  13. Jump up^ WSSRC Ratified Passage Records – “Transatlantic E to W, Plymouth – Newport, monohull and woman ANY vessel” from theWorld Sailing Speed Record Council
  14. Jump up^ WSSRC Ratified Passage Records – “Round the World, non-stop, singlehanded, woman, Vendee Globe,” from theWorld Sailing Speed Record Council
  15. Jump up^ WSSRC Ratified Passage Records – “Transatlantic W to E outright women, and singlehanded woman”, from theWorld Sailing Speed Record Council
  16. Jump up^ WSSRC Ratified Passage Records – “Round the World, non-stop, singlehanded” from theWorld Sailing Speed Record Council
  17. Jump up^ “Britain welcomes Dame Ellen home” . BBC News. 8 February 2005 . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  18. Jump up^ ” ‘ ‘ Old Top Gear Celebrity Laps ” . Bbc.co.uk. 20 October 2008 . Retrieved 28 October 2009 .
  19. Jump up^ Charity Commission . The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, registered charity no. 1096491 .
  20. Jump up^ “Ellen MacArthur in Charity Appeal”, Charities Aid Foundation , 7 February 2008. Retrieved on 2005-02-11.