Teen sailor now closer to Australia


You have to take your hat off to Mike Perham, the British teenager attempting to become the youngest person to sail around the world. The 16-year-old from Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, who departed Cape Town at the beginning of March after overcoming yet more problems with his auto-pilot, is now closer to Australia than South Africa.

Mike has celebrated his 17th birthday by himself at sea, dodged numerous weather systems and even fixed the occasional mechanical/rigging problem on his Open 50,Totallymoney.com, including an autopilot rudder sensor and his kicker line. How many 17-year-olds can say they have done all that? This young man can certainly make his father proud – you can read an interview with Peter Perham in the forthcoming edition ofYM.

In the meantime, here’s Mike in his own words:

‘This morning brought Rain. Lots and lots of rain. Many people who’ve sailed down here in the Southern Ocean have described it with one word: grey. Well, I can confirm that they’re absolutely correct!

‘It seems like there’s no end to this very grey, very murky world that has suddenly descended upon me; sometimes the mist thickens, massively reducing visibility, and it’s always damp. The deck hasn’t been fully dry since I left Cape Town. I have to be careful to keep my clothes as dry as possible as once they’re wet it’s near impossible to dry them out.

‘I’ve made really good progress in the last 24hours,Totallymoney.comhas done us proud by ticking off 260miles – and the good news is that these fast conditions are set to continue.

‘I’ve headed quite far north to avoid a bunch of light air still hanging around to the south. Also, by turning more northerly, I’m less prone to the effects of the lows that continually truck along down here.

‘I’ve been doing a couple of odd jobs here and there but overall everything is ship-shape and Totallymoney.com’s really tuned into the conditions so we’re all happy.

‘Today was the start of a new food bag and I so crawled into the forepeak to bring it back into the main cabin. Whilst crawling back into the main cabin I managed to get my middle finger trapped in the hatch as it swung shut with quite some momentum – followed by a rather loud “Damn it!” Nothing too serious, I’m happy to report!’