Sailor of the Century - 8 solo circumnavigations and he's only 77 - Dekker heads into Indian Ocean...Vital standing rigging checks...SolarPlanet makes it to Singapore...why does red protect night vision?... and much more...
Minoru Saito, 8 solo circumnavigations and he's only 77
Two solo adventurers - one 77 and one 16 - are in the news this week – Japanese sailor Minoru Saito has become the first sailor, racing or cruising, who is known to have completed eight solo circumnavigations and he is the oldest known solo sailor to have completed a circumnavigation at all. What an achievement!
At the other end of the age spectrum, Dutch/New Zealander Laura Dekker, who has so far crossed two oceans with a minimum of fuss, has just left Darwin in Australia heading west into the Indian Ocean, her route a well-guarded secret.
It's timely that Tom Sampson, who organised convoys through the Gulf of Aden in 2010, is warning this week about the dodgy convoy leaders advertising convoys for 2012 through the dangerous waters of the Indian Ocean.
Just to remind us how dangerous they are, Bruno Pelizzari, kidnapped almost a year ago off the coast of Africa with his partner Deborah Calitz, has made his first telephone call to the outside world. The Somalis are still asking $4 million for their release.
The interview that had me guffawing in a most unseemly manner this week was that with an experienced old salt, New Zealander Frank Cooper, who was reported missing when he and his Norwegian boat-owner were 'overdue' on a trans-Atlantic crossing. Don't miss this story – his opinions, which wouldn't please many a marketing company, show a fine appreciation of what it is to be a good seaman.
Lots of practical information here too, as onboard equipment gets smarter and smaller – this week a clever clever autopilot, and an enhanced AIS half the size of its predecessor and quite a lot smarter.
Skip down the headlines and see lots more stories to amuse, entertain or inform.
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