Solo ocean sailor Bruce Schwab is not a Mainer, but he made some Maine connections before racing nonstop around the world earlier this year.

Schwab collaborated with the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in West Boothbay Harbor, recording oceanographic information and maintaining an online journal as he sailed some of the world’s more remote seas. He hung a Bigelow Lab banner from his stern rail at the French port of Les Sables d’Olonne where the race began Nov. 7, 2004, and ended for him on Feb. 25, the first and only American over the line. He placed ninth overall among 20 participants in the international event. Two of the skippers were women. Bigelow Lab maintained links to a Schwab website during the race.

Another Maine connection for Schwab was Portland, where before the race he spent eight months refitting his 60-foot yacht OCEAN PLANET. Unlike many ocean racers, Schwab wasn’t a millionaire or sponsored by a huge corporation so he had to raise serious money — in the hundreds of thousands of dollars — before he could attempt the Vendée Globe, as the race is known. Schwab hails from California.