Sir Francis' iconic yacht arrives in Southampton following its second circumnavigation 15/9/07

Perfect weather opened the second day of the Southampton Boat Show 2007, showcasing the hundreds of yachts at the Hydropool Marina at their very best. Berthing among these today (Saturday 15 September) will be Sir Francis Chichester’s iconic yacht Gipsy Moth IV.

Gipsy Moth IV is now back in British waters following her second round the world voyage which saw her take nearly 90 young people from disadvantaged backgrounds on a voyage of a lifetime. It was her first circumnavigation with Sir Francis that saw her break world sailing records and secure her place in yachting history: fastest time around the world by any small vessel; longest passage made by any small sailing vessel; and the first true solo circumnavigation via the three capes.

Today boating fans have Yachting World’s sister publication Yachting Monthly to thank for her appearance at the Boat Show. A UKSA (United Kingdom Sailing Academy) crewmember told us: “It was Paul Gelder who approached us at UKSA to buy the historic boat and start to run the sailing projects. So far it’s been a great success and there’s a great team behind us. GM IV is one of the most famous boats in history. Just standing on her deck can give you goose-bumps.”

The UKSA bought Gipsy Moth IV back in November 2005 from the Maritime Trust for one whole pound and a gin and tonic. Not bad for the 54ft record-breaker. Now members of the public can take full advantage of the Academy’s loving restoration and board a piece of maritime history.