Tony Bullimore

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Tony Bullimore (born 15 January 1939) is a British sailor from Bristol.

He was rescued after capsizing during the 1996 Vendée Globe single-handed around-the-world race. The race was marked by a number of incidents, including the death of another contestant, Gerry Roufs.

On 5 January 1997, in the Southern Ocean near 52°S 100°E / 52°S 100°E / -52; 100 (Tony Bullimore distress), Bullimore's boat, Exide Challenger capsized and the majority of press and media reports assumed that the 57-year-old sailor was lost. The Royal Australian Navy launched a rescue mission for Bullimore and another capsized competitor, Thierry Dubois.

Bullimore was alive and managed to survive in an air pocket in the upside-down boat in pitch darkness, having lost his food supplies, aside from a bar of chocolate. On 9 January, fellow Vendée Globe competitor Thierry Dubois was rescued by an Australian S-70B-2 Seahawk helicopter embarked on the frigate HMAS Adelaide.

Adelaide then proceeded further south to where the Exide Challenger had been located by a RAAF P-3 Orion. Adelaide dispatched a rigid-hulled inflatable boat to the Exide Challenger where crew members knocked on the hull. Hearing the noise, Bullimore swam out from his boat and was quickly rescued by personnel from Adelaide.[1] HMAS Adelaide then returned both Dubois and Bullimore to Perth.[2] During the return journey, Bullimore met with each member of the boat's crew to thank them for saving his life.

In 2005, Bullimore skippered a team that came second in the 2005 Oryx Quest. In 2007, he was involved in another sailboat record attempt.[3]


  1. ^ Luke Harding and Christopher Zinn, "Alive - after four days in a watery tomb", The Guardian, 10 January 1997. Accessed 9 July 2014.
  2. ^ Vetter, Craig, "Godforsaken", Outside, January 1998. Retrieved 23 September 2010.
  3. ^ "Sail World - Powerboat-world: Sail and sailing, cruising, boating news". 

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