Francis Chichester

From Academic Kids

Sir Francis Chichester, aviator and sailor, (born September 17, 1901, Barnstaple, Devon, England – died August 26, 1972, Plymouth, Devon) was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his achievement of sailing solo around the world in only nine months and one day.

He sailed his ketch yacht, Gipsy Moth IV, from Plymouth, England in 1966 and returned there in 1967, nine months and one day later, having circumnavigated the globe with one stop in Sydney, Australia. The voyage was also a race against the clock as Sir Francis wanted to better the typical times achieved by the fastest fully crewed Clipper Ships during the heyday of commercial sail in the 19th century.

He was knighted with the sword which had originally belonged to his namesake Sir Francis Drake (the first Englishman to circumnavigate the globe).

Francis Chichester owned a succession of yachts called Gypsy Moth of which Gipsy Moth IV was the last. The name originates from the De Havilland Gipsy Moth type of aeroplane in which Sir Francis pioneered navigation techniques required for aviators flying out of sight of land (and land marks)

The first recorded solo circumnavigation of the globe was achieved by Joshua Slocum but it took him three years with numerous stops.

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