Are you really unfamiliar with Jimmy Cornell? He's written the most popular world cruising route guide and circumnavigated several times. Raised his family on his first trip around the planet, iirc. It's fair to say he is legendary.
His involvement in this passage is suspect, but there is little accounting of his actual role. It seems he was involved with planning or recruiting Riley, but also told Greta not to go, if he didn't take on professional experienced crew. Then there is no mention of him.
In the end, professional crews make winter Atlantic passages with some frequency. It's insane, but it's done. The big objection here is that self-taught Riley and Elayna risked their one year old baby to do so. That's on them, not Cornell, not Outremer, even though I'm sure Outremer was delighted to have the exposure, if not encouraged it.
Cornell comes off as something of a self serving pimp for Outremer.
Jimmy Cornell is 'legendary' and rightly so. He has done more for the cruising idea than any other single person, or group that I know of. Not only that, he is continuing to do it. The other old & bold are dead or retired, but he, at 79 is building a new boat.
World Cruising Routes was the first book to use old sailing ship data to show modern sailing boats good safe passages around the world. Its in it umpteenth edition and has a spot on my (very limited) bookshelves. Its fair to say that EVERY current circumnavigator has World Cruising Routes by Jimmy Cornell on their boat, or wished they did.
Furthering Jimmys LEGENDARY status is his forming and designing, and operating for many years the ARC cruising rallys of the World Cruising Club. These rallys visit every continent and and have multiple starts each year from the USA, Europe, Australia etc. This years ARC from the Canaries to the Caribbean, currently underway, has over 200 boats participating. Yes, some participants are new cruisers but many are not. As an entry avenue to cruising these rallys have been instrumental in getting people of all walks of life into cruising.
To denigrate Jimmy Cornell in any way is to be ignorant. He is not a pimp. Nor ought he be denigrated for his original name of Dragoș Corneliu Cișmașu was changed when he emigrated to the UK for ease of pronunciation at a time of less acceptance of migrants.
I do think that BS political term "ill advised" is relevant to this passage.
We have said on this forum MANY MANY times that a passage should NOT be constrained, or need to conform, by times, by crew, or ANY other EXTERNAL factor. As you know I say "Only ever sail in the best season". Attached is a shot of Jimmys own book saying the best months are May and June for this passage.
Jimmy Cornell has broken every rule of modern cruising for a political purpose outside the relevance of cruising, and perhaps, commercially blinded by a presumed sponsorship with Outremer.
So 'ill advised', imho, he has put a 1 year old at an unacceptable heightened risk... and his dismissal of its relevance in the translated article is dumfounding to say the least.
The thing that sickens me most about political motivations is they cloud people intelligence.
Here a 16 year old was put at risk too. She is too young and has a diagnosed mental condition, both proving she does NOT have the ability to make life and death decisions.
To me its simple: Why is the life of a 16 year old political activist worth more than a 1 year old?
More a personal thing: I am the owner and captain of my boat. If someone tells me I am not competent to do a passage then that passage should not be done. To have a co-captain or someone to look over my shoulder is utterly not acceptable.
I think the reason why it was done was, again, for the commercial and political reasons. Disgraceful.
As to reach landfall and people to say 'oh, Mark couldn't have done it himself'.
(This does not reflect on Nikki. I think she has done a terrific job)
Its wonderful they have achieved their passage, and achieved it so well. But it was wrong to do so. A family that attempts that trip next November because 'Riley and Greta did it' and dies... will be seared into my brain as un-necessary.