Posted by: sabrina | September 10, 2009

Solo sail suddenly stopped

SOLO SAILING seems to be a new trend amongst teens – every couple of days newsoutlets report from another youngster who succeeded -or failed- in sailing around the world by him- or herself.

First, there was Mike Perham from England, who set a new world record as the youngest person to cross the Atlantic Ocean and then as the youngest person to sail solo around the world, all by himself.


Solo sailor struggles with start: J. Watson (pic: Paul Harris, SMH)

Just days later, the outcry of Dutch authorities against plans of 13-year old Laura Dekker to sail solo around the world, drew our attention onto the matter again.

(STUFF.CO.NZ): And now we hear of another case – the collision of Ella’s Pink Lady, the yacht of Australian schoolgirl Jessica Watson (16) with a merchant ship which ended her attempt to sail solo around the world right on the very first day. – read more

*   *   *

As this is a blog, once again I feel free to write about what I think about all this.

At first, I should make clear that I think it’s absolutely good to see that those kids actually DO something (meaning something other than partying, drinking and playing Playstation). They are outside, at the fresh air ect. That’s cool. And I also highly respect what they do. I have been on a one-week sailing trip and I can tell you: sailing is bloody hard work. And those solo sailors don’t have a team which supports them when they need help, they have to deal with any situation on their own. Plus make up the right coordinates to find their way. Not to speak of all the silly situations you might find yourself in when you attempt to sail solo. Who knows, a merchant ship may come along and then the fat is in the fire.

And that is exactly my point: I admire those teens who do something different and something like that which is highly respectable – but I just think not everyone is capable of doing so. Mike Perham prooved that he is capable, but others may not be. And just because you’re on a boat, that doesn’t mean that you automatically capable of being on that boat all by yourself for the next two years, struggeling with all sorts of difficulties. And such difficulties inevitably will occur at some stage when you try to sail solo.

Again – it’s awesome that kids like them do things like that (and sometimes succeed)…

…but let’s be honest: after a while it is a bit like H1N1 – you’ve just heard enough of it. So please, people, don’t attempt on more solo sailing record and grant Mike his success for a little while.



  1. […] an earlier blogpost here and […]

  2. […] view earlier blogposts about Laura Dekker & other solo-sailors here, here, here & here Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)100 Year Old Superyacht Sets […]

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