Isabelle Joschke

Born in Munich to a German father and a French mother, Isabelle JOSCHKE grew up between Geneva and the Paris region. Nothing about her suggested that she might one day become a sailor, and yet… The initial trigger was her family holidays in the Austrian lakes, where she discovered sailing aboard an Optimist. She was only five years old, but this experience had already given her a zest for the open ocean.

Fifteen years later, her passion for sailing definitively took hold during a training session at the Glénans sailing school. Whilst studying literature at the Sorbonne, Isabelle stepped aboard a yacht being delivered to Brazil. It proved to be a revelation: she would make the sea her profession. Having just graduated with a Masters in the Classics, she took two diplomas; one to become a sports instructor and the other a skipper.

At the start of her career, her voyages led her to the West Indies, to the United States and to Mediterranean waters. Passing through Lorient, she crossed paths with the Mini sailors and fell in love with the discipline. That’s all it took for Isabelle, then aged twenty-seven, to set sail on the crazy Mini Transat adventure and buy her first boat. In 2007, she participated in the event a second time and won the first leg of the transatlantic race. Her victory revealed the offshore racing world to her, one she has no intention of leaving.

At 45 years old, Isabelle boasts a solid experience in the world of offshore racing, which she was able to learn on board various boats (Mini 6.50, Figaro, Class 40, IMOCA). Committed to gender equality, she was keen to join the very closed circle of women in the Vendée Globe. As such, on 8 November 2020, she set sail aboard the IMOCA MACSF. After a cautious start, the skipper came back in contact with the leading pack where she fought fiercely until 9 January, when her replacement keel ram broke, forcing her to retire. After a technical pit stop in Salvador de Bahia, the sailor set sail again, determined to finish her journey. Joined by Sam Davies, she too out of the race, Isabelle Joschke finished her global circumnavigation on 24 February, thus completing her challenge. 

His co-skipper : Alain Gautier Discover

Sailing Highlights

2022: Route du Rhum - 9th
Défi Azimut - 14th
Vendée Arcitque - Retired
Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race - 5th
2021 : Transat Jacques Vabre - 12th
Défi Azimut - Lorient Agglomération - 8th
Rolex Fastnet Race - 9th
2020-21 : Vendée Globe - Retired - finishes out of the race
2020 : Défi Azimut - 3rd
Vendée-Arctique-Les Sables d'Olonne - 13th
2019 : Transat Jacques Vabre - Retired
Défi Azimut - 8th
2018 : Route du Rhum - Retired 
Dhream-Cup 700 - 2nd
Monaco Globe Series - 2nd with Alain Gauthier
2017 : Transat Jacques Vabre - 8th
Défi Azimut - 3rd 
Cataraid Martinique F16 - 2nd 
2016 : Québec-Saint Malo - 2nd
2015 : Women's Cup - Winner
2008 : Solitaire du Figaro Figaro 2 - First woman to win a leg
2007 : Mini Transat - Winner of the first leg (proto)