Zac Sunderland becomes youngest round-world solo sailor...the great around Australia Rally ... could YOU leave everything and sail away? superyachts avoid pirates - they hope...ten tips for trailer sailers...

16 Jul 2009                                      To respond to this email CLICK HERE

Diary Dates



Zac Sunderland, record breaker yes, but also a fine cruising sailor

Zac looking like a winner - photo by Lisa Gizara,  .
The big news of the week is that the hardy 17-year-old Californian Zac Sunderland is, as I write this, sailing towards Los Angeles on a long tack that will have him arriving around 10.00am local time today into Marina del Rey, where he left more than 13 months ago.

The way he has conducted himself over the last thirteen months has shown him as much more than the youngest sailor ever to solo circumnavigate the planet. He has shown excellent seamanship, that valuable attribute that is a combination of cool headedness, practicality, good judgement, along with long experience and good sailing skills. To be able to have displayed these characteristics at such an age is a remarkable achievement in itself.

He has had major damage to his 36ft boat several times as a result of bad weather, and on each occasion he has been able to jury rig his boat sufficiently to reach the next port for repairs. He has shown great level-headedness on each occasion, matched by perseverence and determination.

Neither has he been just a record-chaser. He spent quality time in many of the ports where he stopped, adding immeasureably to his life experience. This journey took him a full 13 months, whereas his predecessor, David Dicks, who has held the record since 1996, took just eight months to complete his voyage. Mike Perham, who set out from England to do a non-stop unassisted circumnavigation in a 55ft racing yacht but only got as far as Canary Islands before having to stop for repairs, will complete his journey much faster, and may take the 'youngest' record from Zac.

But nothing can ever take away from the fact that Zac Sunderland can truly be called one of the world's finest of cruising sailors.

That's not ALL the news this week – there is a great round-up of non-competitive sailing news from around the world, and of special note is that theAround Australia Rally is ON in 2010. What a fantastic journey this is going to be for participants.

As always, there's something for everyone - browse down the headlines, and find those that interest YOU.

Smooth Sailing

Nancy Knudsen, Cruising Editor

American Sailing Association hails 17 year-old Zac Sunderland
The American Sailing Association (ASA), the nation's largest sailing association, estimates that fewer than 250 people in contemporary history have been known to 'circumnavigate the globe via sailboat, solo. Nearly three times as many individuals have succeeded in reaching the top of Mt. Everest.... [more]
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Nothing can stop him now! - youngest round-world solo
Nancy Knudsen,
There's nothing that canstop him now!! Barring almost impossible-to-imagine events, Californian 17-year-old Zac Sunderland is about to become the youngest sailor on earth to circumnavigate the world solo. He will break the record held since November 1996 by Australian David Dicks who completed his eight month trip when he was 18 years and 41 days old.... [more]
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Classic Malts Cruise leaves Oban
Trish Jenkins,
The team at Oban Marina, Isle of Kerrera, welcomed international crews from 12 different countries prior to the start of the popular Classic Malts Cruise which set off from Oban on Sunday 12th July.... [more]
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Pandering to pirate paranoia
Blackwattle Studios,
The world's richest people are spending millions arming their super-yachts with military-style technology and trained personnel to fight off potential attackers. But are they simply being vulnerable to scare tactics used by security firms to drum up business?... [more]
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A marathon sail - for charity - can one man make a difference?
Robert Dowling/,
Rob Dowling is a man who believes 'one man can make a difference'. Driven by his passion and desire to help the children of the Amazon River basin and his love of sailing, Rob undertook on the 3-4th July, a marathon sail around an estuary in Northern Ireland. This is part one of his story.... [more]
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Kids who learn to sail in the holidays
Ron Smith, Recorder & Times/Sail-World,
It's healthier than playing Nintendo, it's smarter than watching television, it's certainly better than football. It is not only a sport and possibly a lifestyle, it increases independence and self-reliance. All over the world, during school holidays, kids are learning to sail.... [more]
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Sailing Incident Series No. 2 - Can you identify the lessons?
MAIB/Sail-World Cruising,
Judgment is for God, but the best mistakes to learn by are other people's. This is especially so with sailing. In this anecdote, the second of a series, we present a real sailing situation which was investigated by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB), and some lessons deduced. Can you identify the lessons? (Find answers at the end of the story)... [more]
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Aussie Boatbuilder didn't know but takes the fall - three years jail
BW Media,
The boatbuilder found guilty of manslaughter in April because of faulty construction in a yacht's keel, has been handed the full blame with a three year jail sentence, even though he had been kept in ignorance of his workmen's error during the construction of the yacht.... [more]
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Catamaran SV Serenity still held by pirates after four months
Nancy Knudsen,
It is now more than four months since the sailing catamaran SV Serenity left the Seychelles for Madagascar and was hijacked by Somali pirates soon after with three crew on board.... [more]
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What does it take to sail away? - The 'X' Factor...
Shlomit Auciello, Herald Gazette/Sail-World,
A young man, a big dream, some luck, and the 'X' factor. Patrick DiLalla left home in Rockland, Maine, USA with a friend in the summer of 2006 in a 26foot wooden sloop to cross the Atlantic. Since then he has sailed far, and now returned home. There are many young men who dream of sailing away, but only some of them do. What is the difference? Read Patrick's story and decide...... [more]
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Crysalis-T salvage story

'Dad can I have the keys to the yacht? ' Phuket is no different...The 77-foot yacht the Chrysalis-T, which was left floundering on the sands of Maya Bay in Thailand last month after the yacht owner's 21-year-old son ran it aground during a joy-sail with friends, has been successfully re-floated and is now back in Phuket and being repaired at the Boat Lagoon.... [more]
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Ten Tips for the trailer sailer - don't end up like this!
Ruth Manuel-Logan,,
So your new sailing boat is a trailer sailer, and you've never towed a trailer before. Not to worry, all you need is a little practice, and here are 10 safety tips so that you don't end up like this!... [more]
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Science adopts a new definition of seawater
The world's peak ocean science body has adopted a new definition of seawater developed by Australian, German and US scientists to make climate projections more accurate. 'Scientists will now have an accurate measure of the heat content of seawater for inclusion in ocean models and climate projections,' Dr McDougall CSIRO Wealth from Oceans Flagship scientist says.... [more]
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Sailing with Balvenie - Mykonos and Santorini
Amanda Church and Mark Farrell,
Amanda Church and Mark Farrell continue their tales of sailing in the Greek Islands - this time in some of Greece's most renowned treasures of resorts, Mykonos and Santorini.... [more]
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Lifejackets are Useless unless worn
RNLI Lifejacket factsheet: Leisure boating takes place in a pleasurable environment and no one wants to think about the fact that there is the potential for things to go wrong. As one of our lifeboat crew, whose family have been lifeboat crew for four generations, says: ‘The sea doesn't get any less dangerous.'... [more]
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It's happening - the Great Around Australia Ocean Race and Rally
Nancy Knudsen,
Cruising rallies are growing in popularity round the world, so that almost anywhere the cruising sailor wants to go it's possible to join an organised rally, enriching the voyage for the participants, and adding much local knowledge to ease the passage-making. Now there's a new one, one of the most interesting rallies every to be created – the 2011 Around Australia Ocean Race and Rally.... [more]
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So close and yet so far - near miss for Zac Sunderland
Nancy Knudsen,
Surely nothing can stop him now - but you're never home until you're home. Even as the excitement rises in the sailing circles of Zac Sunderland's home state of California, Zac, within days of becoming the youngest sailor ever to circumnavigate the world solo, has had a near miss with a ship at sea.... [more]
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