Jeanne Socrates triumphs! - oldest female solo circumnavigator .
I found it interesting that in an announcement by the organisers of the North Sea Regatta they imply that it is now a race for professionals and observe that 'recreational' sailors have been dropping out.
This is accompanied by the announcement of a new 'cruising class'. This is a common, but gross misrepresentation of the meaning of cruising and does disservice to all the fine cruising sailors in the world.
Cruising, if it needs to be said, is not second-class racing. Cruising is non-competitive sailing, over short or long distances, often into remote areas. In its best examples, it is typified by a sense of independence, freedom and adventure, innovativeness in the face of challenge and a love of the natural world of the ocean and its sealife.
Another great range of stories from the world's oceans this week – the youngest would-be sailor Laura Dekker is whiling away some time in the Galapagos in the middle of her second ocean crossing, while the oldest female circumnavigator, Jeanne Socrates, the 68-year-old who just wouldn't give in, has just crossed her outbound path on her way into Cape Town. That won't mean she stops sailing, as she's not home yet.
In practical news there's a new app for iPhones and iPads – a navigation application that is worth a try, and a Ronstan core block has won a very very prestigious 'Red Dot' award. Nice to see a mere sailing product up there with the best in the world!
There's news of rallies near and far, sailing tales, heroic and unheroic incidents and, as usual, updates on our ocean environment.
The book of the week is – well, it's mine. It's published by Allen & Unwin and is a tale of two racing sailors who meant only to go cruising but returned home transformed people – the ocean can do that to you...
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