Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 80 Old 01-22-2012
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she has much bigger cojones than me,but i think those shrink with age
Be that as it may, I don't think mine were EVER that big. Also, there's something to be said for being too dumb to know any better - that's where the parents are supposed to step in. I imagine most of us got to this advanced age by dint of SOME luck - I know I sure did.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #22 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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Did she do Cape Horn or Panama Canal?
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post #23 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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Did she do Cape Horn or Panama Canal?
Canal.
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post #24 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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post #25 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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Laura Dekker travelled more than 27,000 nautical miles
Started voyage in 2009, aged 14
Finishes journey aged 16 and 123 days old
Spend the last 518 days at sea
Her vessel, Guppy, is a 38-foot Jeanneau Ginfizz ketch
Yacht has two masts and six-foot draft
Travelled to the Canary Islands, Panama, the Galapagos Islands, Fiji, Bora Bora, Australia, South Africa and St. Maarten

Read more: Laura Dekker: Dutch girl, 16, becomes youngest to sail around the world on her own | Mail Online
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post #26 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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When the three teenage girls all started their voyages at about the same time, this and other sites were filled with piss and vinegar on both sides of the argument. My first reaction (as the father of a 14 year old at the time) was that if there were any blame to be assessed, it should be directed at the parents of these girls who let them go on (or paid for, supported, etc) these voyages. However, since then, I have started to feel differently. I suppose there must be teenagers who are mature enough, and maybe even skilled enough to take on the challenges of a such a voyage. I certainly don't know any, but I have come to believe that if there are any, then their parents would be the ones best equipped to make that decision. This of course assumes that the parents are truly acting in the child's best interests and not living their own dreams out through their offspring (which is another question all on its own). In any case, Laura's voyage made the most sense to me: no hurry, no pressure to go non-stop, no Cape Horn heroics.

Congratulations to her.
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post #27 of 80 Old 01-23-2012
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I think we're all missing the point. Any 14-year old who can raise the funds to buy a 38' boat and a year's worth of cruising kitty up front, must be a financial genius.

I say we petition Forbes to start a "youngest quarter-millionaire" list in recognition of these achievements!
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post #28 of 80 Old 01-24-2012
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Let's see if she can follow this up with a decent book deal.

Loved "Dove" by Robin Lee Graham. "Maiden Voyage" by Tania Aebi interesting also.
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post #29 of 80 Old 01-24-2012
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When the three teenage girls all started their voyages at about the same time, this and other sites were filled with piss and vinegar on both sides of the argument.
Yeah, I don't know if "3 teenage girls" is really the way to view it. There's been maybe 5 recent teenage voyages?

Michael Perham - Who first did the Atlantic in a 28ft boat, but then set off in an ill tested Open 50 racing machine he probably only took because he needed to make speed.

Zac Sunderland - Who was building boats with his dad most of his life and spent $6k on a 36-foot Islander he refitted out with help from his dad.

Jessica Watson - Was a liveaboard with her family, spent years racking up 6k miles coastal and 6k miles ocean experience serving as crew and bought a S&S 34 for her trip.

Abby Sunderland - Well her brother did it, so why not her? No clue on her prior sailing experience. So she got put on an Open 40 racing machine(hey, it worked for Mike Perham) and rushed her way into the Indian Ocean off season only to lose a mast.

Laura Dekker - Born on a boat, lived with her father on a boat in Holland until he bought her her first 26ft boat to live on next to his. Then owned a 28ft boat she did solo trips on. Was forced to upgrade to a 38ft boat by the courts(otherwise she would've gone on her well known 28ft boat), but bought a slow cruiser and not a racing machine. Took her time with the trip and picked nice safe routes.

So really it sounds like it's less an age issue than

1> Pick the right boat.
2> Have the required experience.
3> Don't rush the trip.
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post #30 of 80 Old 01-24-2012
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Congrats to Laura! As the father of two daughters (6 and 9) I'm both inspired and frightened by her accomplishment.

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