Sir Robin Knox Johnson - brilliant

Brilliant story:

"I was out sailing with my grandchildren in the harbour here, they were all in lifejackets and I wasn’t wearing one, and the patrol came up and said, “You should be wearing a lifejacket. It’s the law.” And I said “No it isn’t. The reason I’m not wearing a lifejacket is that if one of them falls in, I want to be able to swim after them. A lifejacket would be a hindrance.” “Well our advice is that you should wear one.” And I said, “So what qualifications have you got?” He said, “I’ve got my Boatman’s Licence.” And I said, “Well I’ve got a class one Masters’ Certificate, and I don’t need advice from a ruddy boatman. So fuck off.” It was only because he was officious that he upset me."

Full story - https://www.avauntma...n-knox-johnston

Dr Dave



Funny story.

During one one of the Clipper pit stops we were up all the rigs fixing stuff. My green to sailing gal is hauling tools up the ramp in the cart. RKJ is doing an interview mid ramp blocking her way. She kindly asks him for room and he ignores her, so she asks again not so nice. Someone whispers in her ear explaining who he was. She says loudly 'I don't give a shit who he is, he is in my fucking way'.

Cameras zoom in and crowd gasps. He gracefully steps aside and helps her up the ramp.

She's a keeper.



another quote from RKJ I very much like:

at his last participation in a singlehanded rtw-race he was asked what with his age (which was somewhat advanced already..), & he answered:

"what a crazy concept to measure age in numbers!"



Had RKJ being into his cups at the time ? A very silly quote that in America would have got him shot by some local Sheriff .......



Super Anarchist
Yea, because out of the THOUSANDS of daily interactions across the United States of America, Law Enforcement always resorts to pulling a gun!

Fucking JACKASS, who's sock puppet are you oh "rejected" one? Your ongoing shtick is a pretty stupid one.



New member
Met Sir Robin in line at Heathrow airport a few years back. He was headed to give out an award in Newport RI. The award was in a box as tall as he was. We spoke in line for about 20 min as we queued to the desk. Upon getting there, he immediately asked to have the trophy considered "carry on" luggage. The argument that ensued was epic, especially when the British Airways folks wanted him to open the crate and show them the trophy. He was still arguing when I moved on to the boarding lounge.

However, 20 minutes before boarding, here comes RKJ with the trophy on a dolly being pulled by a British Airways staffer.

Sir Robin wins again!



Super Anarchist
Great Wet North
That story doesn't reflect well on him. If it won't go in the overhead it's not carry-on - period.

Only an asshole would try to get a "person sized" package on as carry-on.

That story does sound like "Don't you know who I am".

Knights are supposed to have better manners than that.



That story doesn't reflect well on him. If it won't go in the overhead it's not carry-on - period.

Only an asshole would try to get a "person sized" package on as carry-on.

That story does sound like "Don't you know who I am".

Knights are supposed to have better manners than that.
Limited experience of business and first classes? Overhead bin - that's monkey class.




Which trophy might that have been, JEB?

I met Sir Robin during the '86 TwoStar. I think he sailed a big catamaran BRITISH AIRWAYS that year. They have been sort of a perpetual sponsor for him so I imagine that he would get his way when dealing with them.

At the awards ceremony for the TwoStar in Newport, class winners were awarded a very nice Royal Copenhagen (ceramics manufacturer) vase with the 'Little Mermaid' bronze statue glazed onto one side. A very lovely and fitting trophy since Carlsberg was the sponsor that year. I got back to my tablemates from the podium and took it out of its box to show and fellow Class 5 competitor Pete Goss filled it with champagne and handed it back for my first toast. Pete was next to quaff and then his co-skipper (a big burly Royal Marine) drained it dry. It got refilled and emptied repeatedly until a little gray haired English lady who had witnessed the came over and chastised up for being such ruffians and not appreciating what a fine piece that lovely vase truly was. I sheepishly started to wrap it in the wrapping paper and fit it back to its equally nice case when RKJ himself come over and took the irate lady by the elbow and told her in very gracious terms just how exiting to have won is such an event and let us boys have their fun as it was our dues!

She was quite taken aback and stammered a bit while I took the vase and refilled it with bubbly and handed it to Sir Robin to join in and further make his point. He took it and shook my hand and then offered it to the little old lady who after a moment took her quaff. Sir Robin then did likewise and told me to leave the trophy with the lady for safekeeping before we went out on the town for further revelry. Seems she was a member of the Royal Western Yacht Club race committee and I'm sure that the vase would not have survived that night without her caretaking. I'm surprised that I survived the antics of Sgt Goss and his mate, those boys sure can party and drink!




I sailed in a 2 boat Clipper trip from Greenland to Iceland with Sir Robin (and Alex Thomson). One of the other crew wrote a poem about Sir Robin call "Knox Nutter":

My name is Knox Knutter,

My ship Ariel is a clipper cutter

A well build ship is she,
for I have tested her quiet a few times you see

Icebergs, there are many
And anchor, well they're ten a penny

Well I'm off on a new adventure,
To keep happy those with a debenture

So off to Greenland we did trek,
Only to be nearly wrecked

Inuit guides the crew did request,

I told Antiope to follow me,
But I've lost her now we're at sea

So I'm heading West,
Right there over that crest

So follow me if you dare,
For complete nutters are rare.


Sir Robin loved it! I've met him a couple of times since and no - he doesn't remember my name :)

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duncan (the other one)

Super Anarchist
Those of you slagging him off with the 'don't you know who I am' angle need to read the linked article.

He's clearly just got the shits with the over-reach of authority, safety audits, lawyers and the nanny state.

Good on him - fuckin legend.

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Super Anarchist
Shanghai, China
I was fortunate to have dinner with Sir Robin in Shanghai many years ago. The opening few lines were "Pleasure to meet you Sir Robin" the response "Just Robin, please".

I will never forget that - in a blink he put me at ease.

That he suffers fools badly is a trait I have to say I share myself and as a) the first man to complete a non-stop solo circumnavigation AND with a set of charts, a watch, a sextant and a (for much of the trip).a non-functioning radio and B) to do it again when he should have been travelling using his bus pass grants him a little 'slack'.

Add to that, the fact that he founded and still is very involved with an organisation that has probably introduce more than any other to offshore sailing while being conscious of the need for safety to an almost paranoid degree I would say it goes without saying that he is aware of the benefits of a lifejackets or (at times) being without a lifejacket.

Yes, we all know, we should wear a lifejackets (in most circumstances) but as he so correctly pointed out, there is a time when they are a hindrance rather than a help (the exception that proves the rule).

We also don't know the entire circumstances but as we all know, give some people a badge and a cap and they rule the world (or at least their little part of it) and want everyone to understand that in, often, the most strident tones.

God the world needs characters, we don't have to always agree with them.

More power to you Sir Robin, sorry, Robin.

See ya on the water




Fucking Legend
Palma de Mallorca
I bet he didn't say the "fuck off" bit in front of his grand kids. He's telling a story and it adds colour, which is his schtick.

Years ago, I did plenty of miles with him...



Super Anarchist
I tried channelling RKJ once...while driving I was pulled over by the police for failing to indicate at a left hand only turn and whereby the younger of two officers enquired why I hadn't indicated?

I said "It was no ones business but my own as to where I was bloody well travelling to".

He stammered a bit and then the older one stepped in saying I was free to go and cautioning against that approach as next time I would be fined.

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