Under the Flag of Friendship: Trimaran of the RGS Circumnavigation Heads to Salvador

Небо и море Бразилии. Фото: Евгений Ковалевский

On the afternoon of March 16, the Russian Ocean Way trimaran of the round-the-world expedition of the Tomsk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society left the hospitable Brazilian Port of Cabedelo. The Russians Evgeny Kovalevsky and Stanislav Berezkin were joined by two new team members – Manuel Taiji and David Sitonio. The international crew under the flag of friendship moved farther south, to the capital of the state of Bahia Salvador.

“We are inspired by this voyage. First of all, we are leaving the zone of headwinds and head currents. Secondly, we are starting to form a tradition of international crews. This is the main mission of the expedition – the friendship of peoples,” the head of the expedition Yevgeny Kovalevsky shared with the readers of the RGS website.

The Brazilian Manuel Taiji is 65 years old. He does not have a serious experience in sea crossings, but almost every day he goes in for sports – he rides a bicycle up to 100 kilometers a week. By profession, he is a veterinarian who controls the quality of meat products in stores. His wife, Erika, and two adult daughters, twins Louisa and Cecilia, will be waiting for the traveler at home.

His fellow countryman David Sitonio is a lawyer by profession, but has been passionate about the sea since he was nine years old. It was at this age that he began diving and surfing. Now 40-year-old David owns a sailing school and is a beginner instructor himself. He has some sailing experience on his own 25-foot yacht, including night sailing. According to him, Sitonio joined the expedition "Following the paths of Russian explorers" because he was "driven by admiration for the unusual vessel and the spirit of adventure." His adventures will be followed by his wife and three-year-old daughter.

Behind each foreign participant are family, friends, colleagues. Hundreds and thousands of people are getting involved in the movement of peace and friendship. We are proud that this process is being initiated by Russian travelers on a unique round-the-world voyage,” emphasized Evgeny Kovalevsky.


Торжественный приём в команду тримарана. Фото участников экспедиции.

The crew of the trimaran also left many friends in Cabedelo. Before sailing, the Russians made a friendship visit to the local port, where they talked about their journey, about scientific and educational tasks, about "Lessons from the Ocean" for schoolchildren, and showed their video sketches.

It is noteworthy that before this event none of the participants in the meeting had ever personally met with Russians. The Brazilians were pleasantly surprised by the openness and friendliness of the Russian circumnavigators. Evgeny Kovalevsky and Stanislav Berezkin accepted the President of the Port Ms. Gilmara Temoteo, members of the Board of Directors Philip, Fernando, Nelly Christine and engineer Alex as shore crew members. All of them received traditional Russian Ocean Way bandanas as a gift and joined the mission of peace and friendship of peoples, which is the priority goal of the expedition under the Russian flag.

“The participants of the meeting confirmed that friendship and mutual assistance of people from different countries is one of the most important tasks of mankind,” emphasized Evgeny Kovalevsky.


Встреча в порту Кабеделу. Фото участников экспедиции

On July 1, 2021, Siberian travelers Evgeny Kovalevsky and Stanislav Berezkin set off along the route of the first Russian round-the-world expeditions of the 19th century: Ivan Krusenstern’s (1803–1806), Yuri Lisyansky’s (1803–1806), Otto Kotzebue’s (1815–1818, 1823–1826), Vasily Golovnin’s (1817–1819), Fyodor Litke’s (1826–1829), Thaddeus Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev’s (1819–1921). The international project of the Tomsk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society "Following the paths of Russian explorers" is dedicated to the 250th birthday anniversary of Krusenstern and the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica by Russian sailors. These events for a long time determined Russia's leadership in the development of the oceans and the discovery of new lands. You can learn more about the project and provide all possible assistance in its implementation on the website of the expedition.

Alexander Zhirnov