SIX WOMEN SAILORS are to start the solo, around-the-world Vendee Globe 2020-21 on Sunday.As Pip Hare notes: "More men have walked on the moon than women have completed the Vendee Globe." These six skippers are the focus of our coverage – the stories of courage and daring they bring to a competition with each other and 27 male sailors.

Clarisse Cremer

“There is still a lot unknown to me on this Vendée Globe. ... I will learn on the job. ... I know I'm going to have very difficult times, but I want to make the most of it, to be good at sea....”

Clarisse Cremer had a career dialed in as an entrepreneur. Her contacts alone would open doors –she studied at HEC Paris, ranked No. 2 in the world for its alumni network by The Economist. Harvard came in at No. 11.

Cremer was off to a fast start with an adventure travel business she’d started with her brother. Then the bug of blue water sailboat racing bit, and how.Cremer campaigned as a novice in the 2017 Mini Transatand blew away the competition. She excelled at wringing speed from a 21-foot, massively powered sailboat on the 4,000-plus mile course from France to Martinique, with one stop off Africa’s coast.The media heaped praise on her, as in this account from interestingsailboats.com:

  • “But the BIG surprise is this girl, Clarisse Crémer, 26 years. Till one year ago she had never sailed solo, much less solo raced and decided to make this year's Transat ... watch out for this girl and if you love sailing and can contribute with some sponsoring, well you will not probably find a better bet. ... She looks like a beginner but if she begins like this I want to see what she will do when she is experienced LOL.”