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Carolijn Brouwer

Carolijn Brouwer

First woman in history to win the Volvo Ocean Race- the toughest and most extreme yacht race in the world!

Athlete | Sport coach
Keynote speaker
Languages spoken
English Dutch French Spanish
Travels from


  • 2018
  • World Sailor of the Year
  • 2017
  • 2017-2018 Winnaar Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng Race Team (gemengd team)
  • 2014
  • 2014-2015 Volvo Ocean Race -Team SCA (vrouwen team)
  • 2000
  • 2000/2004/2008 Olympische Spelen
  • 1998
  • World Sailor of the Year


I started sailing Optimists when I was growing up in Rio de Janeiro when I was about 10 years old. My family has always been involved in watersports, not necessarily sailing. My parents were both competitive rowers. They did occasionally do the Sunday club racing in a 470 dinghy at our local sailing club when we lived in Brazil. My dad was always the skipper and my mum the crew. One day for the first time in their lives they were coming 3rd in the race when 50metres before the finish my mum fell overboard in the water. My Dad then stood before two choices: (1) continue on, leaving my mum in the water but securing 3rd place and then turn around after the finish to pick my mum up or (2) turn around immediately, pick my mum up and continue, meaning they would lose their 3rd place finish. My Dad chose option one and as a result they sold the 470 and from that money, they each bought a Laser dinghy and started racing against each other. From then on, my dad never ever beat my mum in one race! So I guess, I have the competitiveness from my Dad and the natural boat feel from my mum…


Keynote speaker



  • Vovlo Oceam Race inspiration
  • teamwork/communication
  • diversity
  • innovation
  • women in a male dominated sport