Friday, May 14, 2010

No Record? And We Just Hear This Now???


Personally, I don't think canning extreme-sports "youngest person ever to..." records of this sort is such a bad idea.

But I sure hope that young Jess & her team have known this all along.

Note later - Pat from Desert Sea left a very nice clarification in comments - seems that everyone involved in both of the teenagers' attempts would have been totally aware that they were chasing a record-with-air-quotes. This article gave me the impression that this was somehow actual new-type news. Pat's explanation makes it all make a ton more sense.


Tillerman said...

It's been discussed online for some time that Jess's route does not comply with the normal definition for a circumnavigation. But I do think it's a wise move to stop recognizing any of these "youngest person ever to sail round the world" records before some kid of 12 or 13 dies in the attempt.

bonnie said...

I'd heard about the route questions but just figured that that was going to be a question that the folks who determine whether the record has indeed been set to decide after she finished.

What floored me this morning was seeing that that record doesn't even officially exist any more. When did that happen? Why didn't this come out earlier - particularly when Abby & Wild Eyes were in the game too?

I'm with you on the wisdom of ending the practice of granting official recognition. I found that whole thing with the 13-year-old from the Netherlands to be very disturbing, somehow (although if any country could produce a 13-year-old who could do it, it would be the Netherlands, or maybe France, eh?).

But if the record was still open to claimants when Jessica set out, it doesn't seem fair that they not find some way to grandfather her in & at least assess her attempt.

bonnie said...

If it was a legitimate record when she left, this strikes being a bit like if the people who are in charge of the NY Marathon decided to cancel the race after the starting gun had already been fired.

Pat said...

"Circumnavigation" is what you would expect it to be more or less, but the requirements for "nonassisted solo non-stop circumnavigation" seem to have gradually involved to include all sorts of requirements besides the equator and all the meridians of longitude -- stuff like passing south of the capes, antipodean points, same start/finish, minimum lat north, distance at least equal to equatorial circumference, blah, blah, blah.

But, the world speed racing council had announced prior to Jessica's departure that they weren't going to honor any under 18 year old records, so Jessica's attempt was going to try to be an "if only they let under 18's go for it" or a record that might be acknowledged informally outside of the official record certifying group.

But, apparently her sponsors mis-calculated the minimum distance required for an "if only" record, so that was a bit of an embarrassment.

bonnie said...

Thank you, Pat. That makes a TON more sense that the impression I'd gotten from that LA Times thing - which was that this was actual news of the, you know, NEW variety.

moonstruck said...

"SELF APPOINTED OFFICIALS" take the fun out of everything. Abby is having fun in Cape Town and I hope she stops in Alstralia and a few other places. What's the point of sailing around the world and not seeing anything but water?

Dennis G

Pat said...

"evolved" not "involved"... typo

Pat said...

And now for something totally different, a request I saw on sailing anarchy from "Sailon JJ"...

"I am visiting family in NY/NJ Memorial Day weekend and am trying to get a ride. The Sailing Clubs in the area have not been very helpful. If anyone knows anyone who owns a boat in the area or has another suggestion, I would appreciate hearing from you. You can contact me directly at Thanks. "

Does someone have a list or contacts for where to rent or charter or hook up with sailors?

moonstruck said...

can't believe some of the idiot comments on Jessica this am. Took Tyler, 13 years old for first sailing lesson . He loved it. Great sail.

Dennis G

bonnie said...

Dennis G. Moonstruck, what you said about Abby reminds me of my friend Marcus's talk, with his expedition partner Biff, about their unsuccesful attempt to be the first kayakers to circumnavigate Tierra Del Fuego. They were on a slide of one of what he considered to be one of the most spectacular places they saw on the trip & he said "This is what's wrong with trips like this - you see something like this, and you can't stop to enjoy it. If we'd only known we weren't going to make it, we could have stayed here a week." And he was genuinely regretful.

I wonder if Abigail might actually have a better trip with the pressure of chasing a record (even one with air-quotes) gone.