Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What's the Big fuss about Laura?

I don't see it as such a big deal that Laura Dekker is a youngster.
She's going the safer way (wind and wave wise) anyway!

I would be daunted to do something like sail in the Southern oceans like Jessica Watson did.
The only worry for me would be that Atlantic bit if I was Laura.
I wish Laura all the best, it seems like she has the aptitude to do it.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Great Mates

Jessica Watson and Michael Perham met well before her adventure.

Here she is snuggling with him at Mooloolaba before her quest.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Don or Mike? Jessica is torn, lol.

Mike Perham has done a deal with the magazine Womans Day,
so according to this pic. at Manly they are on a lover's stroll, lol.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Jessica Watson sailed around the world.

All these photos were taken outside the Sydney Heads.
Just a walk in the park for our newest solo-circumnavigator. Here's a lovely shot of Jessica crossing the finish line and her parents are getting drenched at the rear of the media ferry, too funny☺☺☺

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Bruce will see her first at sea level

Thanks to sail world.com this article shows pics of Bruce and Suzanne as well as their awesome yacht "Big Wave Rider"
sail world.com.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Model Blogger - Tony L

Absolutely stunning model of Ella's Pink Lady. It's even got a Toughbook!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Rumours at sea

The rumour mill is cranking.

Andrew won't be drawn on the fact that Jessica had stated an intention to beat Jesse Martin's record on her blog, which has since been removed.

People are now suggesting she was helped by her coach around the Horn. This was merely a suggestion from her employer that he hoped to be able to get close enough to wave at Jessica at the Cape. It wasn't recorded at all on her blog. Who knows if he did or not?

Friday, May 7, 2010

Spot the Difference.

Pink Lady Apples have claimed, as they did before departure, that the logo is a breach of copyright.
Hard to blame them I s'pose but they are being nice about it.

☺☺☺She's Apples☺☺☺

Anarchy? LoL...“To their credit, Pink lady Apples seems to be remarkably cool about it, but of course Watson's team should have approached PLA about a sponsorship deal long ago instead of putting themselves in this unfortunate situation. And of course it doesn't take anything away from her record sail, but clearly someone on the team screwed up. Now, PLA has an opportunity to maybe actually make something good out of this instead of coming down as the corporate heavies on Watson and we'll be watching closely to see what they do.”http://www.sailinganarchy.com/index_page1.php

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Jessica has Anzactitude

Here's 2 maps of similar but different circumnavigations by Jessica Watson, she crossed the equator just near Hawaii.

and Jesse Martin, he crossed the equator near Africa in the Doldrums.
Which route's safer?
Technology can now track a yachts mileage, so why adhere to 'old school' rules set for speed freaks viz WSSRC ?
What a Quest these two sailors embarked on! Extraordinary individuals.

This is what the 'Ananarchy site said..."What bullshit

As you know, we loath the officious way much of this sport is run, and we speak out about it whenever warranted. So when we heard that Jessica Watson will be denied world record status of being the youngest person to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around the world, we took a look at it and are calling bullshit, not only on the facts, but the whiners who are complaining about Watson.

It turns out that in order to meet the strict criteria of the record, she had to sail 21,600 miles, but apparently is going to come up short of that. So what? Did she not 'start and return from the same port, cross all meridians of longitude and cross the equator, as required to complete her journey'? The answer is yes, yes and yes. Yet in order to claim the record, she needed to add some 2,000 miles to her tally, miles which are extraneous, unnecessary and a perfect example of the officious aspect of which we speak.

And we find it ridiculous that the wank from sail world is squawking the loudest about Watson's record not being valid. How about instead of whining like a little bitch about that the the 'official' rules were not met, just call it for what it is - she's the youngest to do what she did. Celebrate it, call it a record, and stop acting like a douche. A tall order, we know.

But who cares what he says? We think, and we bet most of you do too, that Jessica kicked ass, will meet the definitions of being the youngest person to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around the world, and deserves official recognition for it. Screw the wankers who claim otherwise.
05/06/10 "

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The forgotten Cape.

Jessica still has one more Cape to pass.
Cape Howe situated on what Tasmanians like to call us "The Mainland."

Arriving Here from Here

So there it is that shining dome, atop yon white light tower
I saw it only months before, a lighthouse stemlike flower
It beckoned me to stay behind, not take to distant ocean
My destiny was written then, that siren’s power broken

I sailed off with cliffs astern, set course way out for here
So many months have disappeared, so many showed they care
For young as I such tender years, portrayed to one and all
An Inner longing deep within, answering primordial call

As rocky portal flanks both sides, flotilla widely spread
I think of miles beneath my feet, across pink deck I’ve tread
From rattlings hold I wave to all, no one particularly
For port and starb’d, stern to bow, the crowds another sea

The tears are joy and sadness too, emotions on the flow
This trip is done, the miles complete, I’m back and I’m on show
I will not say it wasn’t hard, a task sometimes so great
Success was something meant for me, by sailing to my fate

If dreams are made to let us live, with hope and wondrous thought
Each of us can only try, to honour those dream we’ve caught
For me I’m home a new girl born, through happiness and fear
Most of all, my dream came true, “by setting out for here”


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Biggest wave

Shipsterns (+ the bluff) in Tasmania offers the biggest barrel anywhere Australia also, there is a fair chance that you could die if you blow the take off when it is solid. It's a long walk to the hospital and if that doesn't worry you then the healthy population of White Pointer Sharks might.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Capt. Bligh's Bounty boat reenactment begins

Today, Wednesday April 28, the crew of the Talisker Bounty Boat 2010 Expedition begin their replica Expedition of Captain William Bligh’s 3,700 mile open boat ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ voyage.

The reenactment, following the journey across the Pacific from Ha’apai in the Kingdom of Tonga to Timor, launched on the same day, at the same time and in the same place 221 years after the original mutiny journey.

The Bounty boat (Taliskers) today heads to Tofua from our paradise island.

Don McIntyre / David Wilkinson / David Pryce / Chris Wilde.
Reserve crew+camerman - Stuart Kershaw

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

EPL by Tony L

Courtesy of the Jessaholics blogsite.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Seals at Curl Curl

Jessica Watson just mentioned in her Blog that she saw a seal float past.
This is from the Manly Daily, "IT’S not often you see a seal lazing away another day in the sun but it’s pretty impressive when your backyard includes such sights. Ray Ward obviously thought so when he snapped this seal at Curl Curl (right) taking a well-earned break from a day’s fishing." This seal hung around for a coupla days, so funny. 

Friday, March 26, 2010

Lol Hamilton fined for a Burnout in OZ.

Lewis Hamilton, after recording the fastest time for Sunday's Formula One Grand Prix, has been nabbed by the Police last night for doing a burnout in the city of Melbourne.

Senior police constable Scott Woodford said that a 25-year-old male, resident in Switzerland, was stopped at 9.15pm in the St. Kilda neighbourhood at the wheel of a brand new Mercedes.

He said the car, which had "accelerated heavily and lost traction to the rear wheels" in making a turn, had been impounded and was due to be released on Monday. "He's expected to be charged on summons with the offence of improper use of a motor vehicle," said Woodford. SMH March 27, 2010 - 10:27AM.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

UFO's over Sydney

Sydney's 'Daily Telegraph' newspaper reported that Ufo's were photographed with an iPhone by..."Ms Hartigan said the main UFO then "shot off" above Governor Macquarie Drive at Chipping Norton, with the smaller UFOs zipping away in the opposite direction."

Must be a slow news day.
I remember making a few of these things when I was mucking around in the sand dunes.

Just get a jiffy fire-lighter, wire to hold it and a bit of string and an orange garbage bag (tougher)


A typical example
Here it is 2010 and they're still making news, lol.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Farkasova wins Gold at the Winter Paralympics!

Alpine Skiing - Women's Super-G - Visually Impaired


Gold Medallist.
Now she can get her eye fixed at least. A bit of a bummer about the surname. Unless she is a Lawyer or similar occupation.
(You'd think the official photo selected would show her with her correcting glasses on at least)
I just knew she'd win with such a great surname like that!
She ended up winning 3 gold medals! What a champion.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy St Patrick's day!

Ahhh ta be sure ta be sure! It’s Sain’ paddy’s day ma wee Lads and Lassies.

I thought I’d mention to you a road sign I saw on a windy mountain road, near the famous Johnny foxes pub, on the way to Dublin.
1st sign on a bend…Slow, next bend another sign…SLOW, two bends later another sign…SLOWER, lol.

There’s also a good Irish tip about how you should count the number of beans you eat with your meals.
Only count to 239 or otherwise it’ll be too farty. ☺

Monday, March 15, 2010

Ahh the world is getting back to normal

But, according to South Park golf is stupid again, lol.
Tiger Woods has announced that he will be playing the Masters at Augusta, Georgia, USA.
Oh yeah and he's still living in the same house with Elin. Did anyone know he was a father too?

Michael Clarke (Australian cricket captain in waiting) is going to still play cricket after splitting with fiancee Lara (Where the bloody hell are ya?) Bingle.
Gee, I wish guys like Clarkie (pic) would treat their girls better in public.
Get Your hands on their waist and not their ass!!!!

Michael Schumacher is back driving formula one cars.
Give him a rainy track and no-one will beat him.

NEWS Just in:
Brian Mc keever, the blind athlete denied a run at the Winter Olympics, has just won the Gold Medal in the 20km Cross country event in the Paralympics at Whistler. PLUSSSSSSSS: Today, march 17 in Whistler, Canada. He has just got the double. he got the gold in the 10km cross country event. Double PLUSSSSSSS: On the final Competition day March 21 he won his third gold medal in the 1km classic. This event requires you to survive a series of heats plus a final.
Gotta love ya sport!!!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Jessica's book titles, LOL.

How to stuff up a blog in one go.
100 ways to remove blood stains from carpet.
Alone and un-assisted...Yeah, right!
The quest for a record that's not.
Who Lionhearted.
Jessica's blue wonderland.
A mad ride tethered to a Pink Lady.
Touche turtle Quest.
How to keep your teenage daughter busy.
Staying away from boys that reckon they're Mathew Flinders.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Blog madness!

I have today opened up a crack in Jessica's blog that may cause widespread destruction or good humour.

You see I have inserted a gif in her blog.
OK so that's no big deal, been done already, blah blah blah...


This gif has a link to an enormous variety of html codes for other gifs.
My tip is that from now on we won't be short of animative gifs in this blog, lol.

STOP PRESS: Andrew methinks is onto me. Oh well it was nearly 12 hours, lol. I didn't mean any harm but it was fun for a while. See Ya's. 

Friday, March 5, 2010

A nice spot for a hit

I thought I'd show you a nice place to play 9 holes of golf.
Palm Beach in Sydney.
You can see the course in the photo (taken from Barrenjoey Lighthouse) on the Pittwater side of the peninsular.
The soapie 'Home and Away' is filmed on both sides of the peninsular, you can see the wharf jutting out into Pittwater.
You can usually see a few white pointers from the fifth tee, lol.
Ya gotta love those European tourists lapping up the Aussie sun.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Lymphoma days

Recently a few people close to me have been diagnosed with cancer or had it reoccur somewhere else.
Here's some classic phrases I picked up during my treatment:

“You can get busy living or you can get busy dying.”   The Shawshank Redemption.

“It’s not necessarily the bugs on the outside but moreso the bugs on your insides that you have to be wary of.”     Bronwyn, Area Nurse for Northern Sydney Health.

“Normal? Look! There’s no such word.”    Meredith, Registered Nurse 12A RNSH.

The biggest advancements in cancer treatment over the years have been in the drugs to help you cope with the Chemo. These are generally the anti-nausea drugs.
Chemo is a mix of (poisonous) drugs taken over the course of a sitting which usually lasts 6 hours. If you have to get a blood transfusion this takes an extra 2 hours per bag of blood.

The biggest drag with Chemotherapy is that you have to be healthy to have it. Any time you get sick this delays the treatment.

The most dangerous time is when you have no white blood cells in your blood (Neutropenic) You have to be vigilant with Hygiene and avoid mouth ulcers and Hemorrhoids. This is the time that if you pick up swine flu, for example, you would be lucky to survive.

Hodgkins Lymphoma (Haematology) has a very high survival rate and is mostly caught by people over 55yrs old.
Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma is usually Haematology (blood) and Oncology (tissue) and so the survival rate is varied according to the type of cancer.
Through my observations, Breast cancer is the scariest one because it is so deadly and can flare up anywhere in the body. To me it is the uncertainty that is the worst for a patient.

There appears to be a causal link with diet and sugar such as some carbohydrates (biscuits and white bread) with some cancers.
Mushrooms in the diet have been shown to reduce the likelyhood of Breast cancer in women.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Crosby IS the new Gretzsky

Sidney Crosby scored the Gold medal winning Goal, 7.40mins into overtime, to cement his place next to the great Wayne Gretzsky.

Wearing 87 to signify his birth date, although reguarded as unlucky in Australia's national game of cricket, provided no such omen for the rising star in Ice Hockey.

This jersey will sell heaps for many weeks to come.

Nowadays a 30cm wave a Tsunami.

The tsunami alert was issued after a massive 8.8 magnitude quake hit Chile, killing hundreds of people and triggering a tsunami that rushed across the Pacific a wave of 30cm was recorded at Bondi.
Talk about an over-reaction in Australia.
These forecasters can do better than this.
I know the sea can be unpredictable but this was on the last sunday of summer and the bastards closed all the beaches on the Australian coast.
Talk about a nation being run by insurance companies!
Most people went down to watch anyway, sigh.

These countries were way closer...Reuters:
Meanwhile, waves up to 1.5 metres high rammed into New Zealand's east coast
Oceanographer Nathan Bedford has told CNN water levels in Hawaii are rising by about a metre before receding then rising again.
Earlier, a four-metre high wave hit part of the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia.
A huge tsunami has caused serious damage to the southern part of Juan Fernandez island, also known as Robinson Crusoe island, while a partial evacuation of Easter Island has been ordered.
Boats, including US Navy ships, moved out to deeper water so that they would be unaffected by the wave.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Gold Medallist saves the day

Lydia Lassila has won the Gold Medal in the womens Aerials at Whistler/ Vancouver Canada.
The Winter olmpian has saved the Olympic committee from the dilemma of choosing who leads the Aussies with the flag into the closing ceremony.
Torah Bright carried it into the opening and it looked like the 'friendless' silver medallist, Dale Begg-Smith would get the honour. Now it looks like Lydia will get the honour. PHEW☺☺☺

PS. Did you see the look of relief on Kevin Gosper's face when he placed the Gold Medal around Lydia's neck today?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Brian Mc Keever

Notice the Bib number? 42. Some 'Hitchiker's guide to the galaxy' fans would agree that this is the answer to the meaning of life.

He is the first athlete to compete in both the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
STOP PRESS!!! THEY JUST CHUCKED HIM OFF THE TEAM (27th Feb)...WHAT A bastard of a coach! His replacement, Babikov competed in 4 events and got 33rd in this one. You've gotta feel for Mc Keever.

His event is the Men's 50 km, Mass Start Classic. It's the last event of the games.
He suffers from Stargardt disease, causing him to lose 90 percent of his vision.

"It's the Olympic Games (Paralympics) for people with physical disabilities and I hope people will realise through my story the gap is not that big."

He has just won dual Gold Medals at the Paralympics, mission accomplished. March 17, 2010.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Gridiron final series

Those americans know how to get a crowd revved up before the game starts.
At this match, about half way through The Star Spangled Banner, they released a bald eagle to fly all around the stadium only to land on its trainers arm in exact unison with the last note of the song.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Winter olympics week 1

My 2 favourite events this week were the snowboarding and of course the ski-jumping.

Torah Bright won for Australia while Shaun White did it for America.

This is how high they both can go off the half-pipe.

Gotta love Simon Ammann's double olympic double golds.

And a creepy Skiing poster...Lol ☺☺☺

Our Two man Bobsleigh found the track challenging on their first run.
The picture shows how they went from just after a start mishap.
 It's a long way down when you're Downunder!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

VJ no more.

It looks like the VJ class died quickly in 2007 after the great (St George) sailor, Larry Selby,set sail for heaven.
Here's a few pictures from when I was sailing them against Larry (above at Teralba lake Macquarie, that's me with a  spinaker pole, lol) and below right up to the last days circa 2008.
New Hissy from the 1970's and a couple from 2007.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The America's cup has jumped the shark!

Seriously these boats are speed racers.

How could you call them Yachts?

James (Jimmy) Spithill from Oz was the skipper and victorious on BMW Oracle-USA.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


The anonymous blogger mentioned he sailed a firball.
Not quite a VJ, but great fun.
Check out this clip on Youtube, the ending sums up the camaraderie between classes. I suppose the main tip is to give way to port by going behind the boat even if it's a tad slower than you, lol.
fireball sailing 2008

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Australia remembers 'Black Saturday."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3dPlVvkIZ8 This youtube clip was seen all around the world (Koala) and reminds us all of the disaster.

This clip shows you what it was like being a witness to the fire front.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree

Men at work have lived up to the Aussie slang today.
The band was so named 'Men at work' because that's the sign Aussie roadworkers use and often it looks like they're all doing nothing.

Their song "Downunder" has been found to be a rip-off of the tune 'Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree.'

Very fitting that Larrikin music were the winners.

men at work rip off folk song.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Jessica has Dyslexia. Who knew?

Solo sailors dyslexia hell revealed
By Kathleen Donaghey From: The Sunday Mail (Qld) January 31, 2010
The 16-year-old was a preschooler when she was diagnosed with severe dyslexia – the lone child in the class unable to count to 10 or recite the alphabet. But after enduring the stigma of illiteracy, Jessica's fate changed at age 11 when mum Julie read her Lionheart, the story of Jesse Martin's solo world voyage.
"What people don't realise is that I was reading to her because she couldn't read."...
I was helping her access a world she couldn't reach. When she heard Jesse Martin's story and realised how human he was, Jessica went very quiet, you could see the cogs turning.
"She realised he was an ordinary person with vulnerabilities and humanness. And that's why he wrote the book: so people realised you don't have to be superhuman to go around the world."

Jesse Martin's book Lionheart is a an easy read and good value.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

BRUMBYY returns to Jessica's blog in style.

The Tar

Held by straps from falling out
As boat began to roll
Shrieking din of wind about
Was drowned by Neptune’s soul

Green view was there in glassy screen
Tall mast, submerged below
Momentarily this state was seen
Each time, the Lady on show

Upright again in moving mountains
Those crashing curls of power
Down below still held restrained
Surveying, the destructive shower

Not once not twice, but more they came
Those massive waves with force
Inside the Lady, they felt the same
Yet, each came with its own voice

The fear of Tar against the sea
A boat alone in might
Proved the strength of only she
This girl, who battled fright

With Neptune’s test on passing by
Vessel proved its class in storm
Jessica reached, the ultimate high
An Aussie legend born

Monday, January 25, 2010

The climb down from Everest begins

This is from her blog entry.
She describes it best:

"That much wind means some very big and nasty waves. To give you an idea of the conditions, they were similar to and possibly worse than those of the terrible 1998 Sydney to Hobart Race. We experienced a total of 4 knockdowns, the second was the most severe with the mast being pushed 180 degrees in to the water. Actually pushed isn't the right word, it would be more accurate to say that Ella's Pink Lady was picked up, thrown down a wave, then forced under a mountain of breaking water and violently turned upside down

Under just the tiny storm jib, the big electric autopilot did an amazing job of holding us on course downwind, possibly or possibly not helped by my yells of encouragement! It was only the big rogue waves that hit at us at an angle (side on) that proved dangerous and caused the knockdowns.

The solid frame of the targa (the frame that supports the solar panels) is bent out of shape and warped (see pic below), which provides a pretty good idea of the force of the waves. Solid inch thick stainless steel tube doesn't exactly just bend in the breeze, so I think you could say that Ella's Pink Lady has proven herself to be a very tough little boat!"

The Touche Turtle Award 2010

"Gotta love this city."

Here is the post that fitzy refers to. This bloke is hilarious, lol:

0700/26th position 0911 02420 trip 120/24
Drama - sort of

There we were, me in my running shorts having been limpid with sweat all day trying to trace the HF problem, Pete in his grotty green salty Stubbies, having a small relaxing mug of random Aussie red with rehydrated curry and rice and celebrating for Hilary - idly watching the cloud building up to the south, still stinking hot and humid, water 37 deg. And then there it was - deep grey horizon, rolling black squall line coming in like the vulture stooping - two decrepit old farts jerked into action - just time to put things below, drop in the second reef, roll in the headsail to a quarter of its size and it was on - only about 25 knots, 90 degree wind change, follow the blast around, lightning, deeep sonorous thunder rolling all about - not at all like Mr Krupa's riff over there in the Pacific last year but still musical - torrents of rain - Pete gets naked with the soap, I go down and connect the mast base to the earth and come up and let the rain wash off the day's grot. And now we're in 2 knots, just as the GRIB predicted and due for another couple of days of it. I'd been soaking my other grommy clothes in a bucket of salt water and green stuff so was able to hang it out in the rain and get a free rinse Yay! And it's (relatively) cool and the sea feels really warm...as it would. Lightning away to the north, overcast and spotty rain here.

And then it got interesting. Pete woke me @ midnight - 'There's some black cloud ahead, might be a bit of wind...good night' - not just dark but glutinous inside-of-cow black and lightning all around so I packed the satphone and some gps' into the icebox and got out there - like going under a table and the first blast had us around onto 290 with horizontally slanting rain so thick that I couldn't look into it and had to adjust everything then tack by feel - and a ship! dead in line and we were the give way vessel so had to get behind him except that he stopped right in front of us ... and so it went, non stop for 3 hours with lightning all around, the wind actually hot on my face, my thin pants and T shirt and me wringable - warm water crashing over the bow and back to the cockpit on sheets - black black night, occasional phosphorescence to the side -up to the foredeck twice to sort the furler gradually stumbled through it, the rain eased, the wind backed again and we were back on course and time to wake Pete, who slept through it all. Fun. How I love the tropics.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year

Dilip (a sailor nearby in the region of Cape Horn) wrote “Midnight of New Years eve, just as I was getting out to change the wind vane with the wind dropping, the phone rang. Finding it a bit odd to receive a phone call close to midnight, picked up the phone and what a pleasant surprise! Jessica calling to wish New Years! So very thoughtful of her! Amongst all the new years wishes I have received in all these years and at various places, I think I will cherish this, from this gutsy girl 350 NM away and the nearest human to me, as the most special! With wishes like these how can 2010 not be anything but great!”
Nothing more to say really.

Jessica Watson - From a book to the Horn

Tony L

At a very young age you listened to your mum reading ‘Lionheart’, the book about eighteen-year old Jesse Martin’s 1999 solo, non-stop and unassisted voyage around the world from Sandringham on Port Phillip Bay in a 34ft Sparkman & Stephens yacht he named ‘Lionheart’. You were captivated by this story and soon discovered another Australian, Kay Cottee, had completed a similar solo, non-stop and unassisted voyage from Sydney to become the first woman to complete this task.

The years went by and you learnt to sail, presumably on the waters of the inlet at Mooloolaba, a popular holiday place on the coast of Queensland not far north of Brisbane. Mooloolaba has a large Marina used by ocean-going yachts and no doubt the sight of their masts and rigging became an early fascination as you dreamed of following in the footsteps of Jesse and Kay.

Then, in May 2008, you heard about an opportunity to sail with an organization called Oceanwatch from New Zealand to Fiji and back to New Zealand on a boat called ‘Magic Roundabout’. You did that trip – to gain experience – and although you learnt much about the aches and pains associated with ocean sailing, your appetite for the sea became unquenchable so instead of flying home you sailed home to Brisbane on another boat.

By this time your mind was made up. You learnt how to use a spell-checker and worked on a proposal for obtaining sponsorship with assistance from your Mum and Dad, and a group of helpful friends.

By October (2008) you had reeled in a few businesses interested in sponsoring you and you continued to increase your sailing experience by sailing on a large catamaran named ‘Big Wave Rider’ which was owned by Bruce Arms who later became your Project Manager’. On this trip you experienced the use of a drogue (parachute) designed to slow a boat running downwind in a storm. You followed this trip with some racing with the Cairns Yacht Club before returning home to begin doing presentations to raise interest in your planned voyage.

On 2 December 2008 your new website “youngestround.com” was launched and you set a target date for departure as ‘late next year’ (2009). About the same time you acknowledged the efforts of Zac Sutherland and Mike Perham and became ever more determined to become the youngest female to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around the world.

You again joined a crew on ‘Magic roundabout’ and set off from Mooloolaba to conquer the Tasman, known by Aussies and New Zealanders as ‘The Ditch’. It was a trip planned to give you hands on experience making all the decisions required to complete the voyage and you experienced a variety of weather conditions and learnt much from it. It was a voyage in which you learnt how to set a steering wind vane, how to tolerate little and no wind, how exciting it was to be accompanied by sea birds and dolphins, what it was like in a ‘bouncy’ 3 metre sea and strong wind, and what ‘living aboard’ a boat was really like.

During January 2009 you again joined the crew on ‘Big Wave Rider’ and learnt what it was like to fix rigging things while suspended from the top of a yacht’s mast.
Around that time too, you gained a number of sponsors and Bob McDavitt, a well known meteorologist from New Zealand offered his support and weather routing service for your voyage.

Early in February you departed Mooloolaba for Hobart, Tasmania, on ‘Big Wave Rider’ and on the way you called in at Southport and Sydney and sailed under Sydney Harbour Bridge for the first time. On this trip you experienced the use of a solo climbing system to climb ‘BWR’s’ swaying mast to fix a lashing on the radar reflector near the top of the mast while at sea. [to be continued]

In Hobart you met Don McIntyre, a very experienced solo sailor who was to become one of your most valued supporters, and who provided the boat in which you would sail to fulfill your dream. You then went to New Zealand to board a yacht called ‘Evohe’ for a trip to Campbell Island, at latitude 52 S, for experience in the cold conditions of the ‘furious fifties’, you recently referred to as the ‘fearsome fifties’. Back home again, and March became a month of looking for sponsorship and raising awareness of your plans.

During May your press conferences became increasingly frequent, you celebrated your sixteenth birthday, studied for your Ocean Yachtmaster certificate, learnt to use a sextant, gained your Australian Boat Licence, began sailing an S&S 34 referred to as ‘Youngestround.com’, and took it to the Sanctuary Cove international Boat Show on the Gold Coast south of Brisbane. After that ‘Youngestround.com was stripped down and one by one her numerous faults were fixed. Nothing was to be left to chance and a steady stream of new equipment was fitted to make her as safe as she could be.

In June you did a sea survival course, learnt how to maintain a marine diesel engine, how to diet on the trip, and listened to Don McIntyre and Mike Perham quiz you on how you would cope with numerous different sea scenarios.

In July ‘Youngestround.com’ was painted pink, and on 27 July 2009 she was renamed ‘Pink Lady’ and trucked to Sydney for the Sydney International Boat Show, and you attended many interviews with Don McIntyre, Jesse Martin and other supporters. ‘Pink Lady’ was then returned to Mooloolaba for more fitting out to make her ready for the voyage.

On 2 September 2009 Ella Bache stepped on board as your major sponsor and ‘Pink Lady’ became ‘Ella’s Pink Lady’.

It was time for action. On 8 September you departed Mooloolaba and the Sunshine Coast for Sydney. You overcame a hiccup caused when you didn’t give way to a ship and made an unscheduled visit to Gold Coast City Marina for repairs before again departing for Sydney on 1 October.

Ella Bache ‘launched’ their involvement as major sponsor on 12 October and ‘Ella’s Pink Lady’ was readied for departure. Those of us who were following your progress began to sense your building excitement, and interest in the date of your departure from Andrew Short Marine at
The Spit on Sydney’s Middle Harbour increased.

Then, on 17 October 2009 you announced: “Tomorrow I’m going to get up and sail around the world!”

Since then you have done just that. You stepped up to the mark and set off to fulfill your chosen task, and as time went by you ticked the boxes and wrote ‘job done’ as you passed each goal you set to achieve your dream.

And now, at the end of 2009 you have Cape Horn in your sights and have accumulated a large following of International supporters who communicate with you via your blog pages and think of themselves as part of your ‘extended family’, and an even larger collection of blog-readers interested in your daily progress.

You have become renowned as a wonderfully descriptive writer, a photographer who teases us with the beauty of all that the sea and sky has to offer, a video commentator with a unique sense of understated humour, and Australia’s most famous “Chocaholic”!
Thanks to Tony L (Mt Martha VIC) for his insight so far.