Solo round-the-world sailor Dilip Donde praises Raymarine products
11 June 2010
Intrepid naval officer Dilip Donde, whose boat is fitted with Raymarine products, has become the first Indian national to sail solo around the world.
Commander Donde used a range of Raymarine navigational equipment during his 21,600-nautical mile, 276-day lone round-the-world voyage to and from Mumbai, India and praised Raymarine products for being easy to install and use.
Commander Donde set off in August last year and stopped at only four ports – Fremantle (Australia), Christchurch (New Zealand), Port Stanley (Falklands) and Cape Town (South Africa) during the challenging voyage.
Raymarine equipment on board Commander Donde’s 56ft-long yacht INSV Mhadei, which was specially built by the Indian Navy, includes ST7002 and ST6002 autopilot controls, a S3G course computer, C120 chartplotter, Ray 54E VHF radio and ST60+ wind indicators.
Fiona Pankhurst, Raymarine Head of Corporate Marketing and PR, says, ”We congratulate Commander Donde for his historic achievement, which reflects his outstanding skill, courage and determination.”
Famous sailor, former Raymarine/YJA Yachtsman of the Year, Sir Robin Knox Johnston, who himself completed two solo circumnavigations, guided Commander Donde on the boat constrruction, training and route planning.
Commander Donde says, “I would recommend Raymarine products to other sailors, since I find them easy to use, install and rugged. I had seen them on Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s boat during his 2006 Velux 5 Oceans campaign.
“Another consideration for choosing Raymarine was its global presence, which turned out to be a good decision, as during the trip we got excellent service in Fremantle and Cape Town.”
On arrival, Commander Donde was greeted by India’s Vice-President Hamid Ansari, Chief of Naval Staff, Nirmal Kumar Verma and family members, on board INSV Delhi, anchored at the finishing line. He told them, “After finishing the nine-month-long voyage on board INSV Mhedai, I cannot think of any achievement bigger than this.”
During the voyage, Commander Donde battled 40ft. waves and prolonged gale-force winds. He says that he faced so many challenges, it is very difficult to single out any in particular.
Commander Donde is now looking forward to a nice holiday – on terra firma!
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