Ian Walker (sailor)

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Ian Walker
Medal record
Men's sailing
Representing  Great Britain
Olympic Games
Silver medal – second place 1996 Atlanta 470
Silver medal – second place 2000 Sydney Star

Ian James Walker (born 25 February 1970 in Worcester, Worcestershire) is one of Britain’s most successful sailors, with two Olympic silver medals to his name. Walker also coached Shirley Robertson and her Yngling Team to gold at the 2004 Athens Olympics. He is a member of Northampton Sailing Club

At the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Walker received the silver medal in the 470 class along with his sailing partner, John Merricks.[1] At the 1996 470-European-Sailing-Championship he won with his Partner John Merricks the bronze medal. On 15 October 1997, both Walker and Merricks were passengers in a minivan in Italy when the driver lost control, and Merricks was killed.[2]

In 1999, Walker began sailing with Mark Covell.[2] At the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Walker and Covell won the silver medal in the Star class.[3]

When Britain launched its first bid for the America’s Cup for 14 years in 2000, Walker was named as the skipper. Then, in the 2007 America’s Cup he joined fellow Olympic medallist Iain Percy as the tactician of the Italian team +39 Challenge. His America’s Cup commitments were combined with the highly successful TP52 campaign as skipper of 'Patches', owned by Eamon Conneely.[4]

Volvo Ocean Race[edit]

2008/09 Race[edit]

In 2008/09 he was the skipper of the Green Dragon boat in the Volvo Ocean Race.,[5] the boat finished fifth in this race out of eight competitors.

2011/12 Race[edit]

In 2011/12 Walker skippered Abu Dhabi's first entry in the Volvo Ocean Race – Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing. Overall the team finished fifth out of the six competitors.[6]

2014/15 Race[edit]

Ian was appointed as Skipper of Abu Dhabi's next entry into the 2014/2015 Volvo Ocean Race, sailing the new VO65 class. He successfully lead the team to victory, securing an insurmountable point lead over the other teams on the second to last leg.[7] During this race the team also won the in-port race series[7] and set a 24-hour distance record of 550.82 nautical miles while approaching Cape Horn.[8]

Records held[edit]

  • Fastest circumnavigation – Isle of Wight – 2 hours 21 minutes (Foncia) August 2012. Ratified by the World Sailing Speed Record Council
  • Fastnet Monohull Race record – 42hrs 39min, (Volvo Open 70 Abu Dhabi) in August 2011
  • VO65 24-hour distance record – 550.82 nautical miles (Volvo Ocean 65 Azzam) in April 2015


  1. ^ "1996 Summer Olympics – Atlanta, United States – Sailing" Archived 21 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine. databaseOlympics.com (Retrieved on 17 April 2009)
  2. ^ a b Wallechinsky, David (2004). The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics, Toronto: Sport Classic Books. ISBN 1-894963-34-2
  3. ^ "2000 Summer Olympics – Sydney, Australia – Sailing" Archived 19 August 2014 at the Wayback Machine. databaseOlympics.com (Retrieved on 17 April 2009)
  4. ^ Green Dragon Racing Team
  5. ^ "Walker to set sail in Volvo race". BBC. 10 October 2008. Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  6. ^ "Volvo Ocean Race Report (2011/12)" (PDF). Volvo Ocean Race S.L.U. October 2012. p. 103. Retrieved 2015-06-23. 
  7. ^ a b Race, Volvo. "Scoreboard". Volvo Ocean Race. Retrieved 2015-06-23. 
  8. ^ "ADOR wins fifth leg of VOR | WAM". www.wam.ae. Archived from the original on 23 June 2015. Retrieved 2015-06-23. 

External links[edit]