Zac Sunderland , NB spelling, it is not Zak Sunderland, from California, USA has just become the youngest person ever to sail around the world on his own. He took 13 months to circumnavigate the globe, from Marina Del Rey California via Hawaii Australia South Africa, Mexico etc... and back to Marina Del Rey.
He was not even 18 when he got back to California. An extraordinary feat for anyone but particularly for someone so young. A lot more interesting than people being vulgar and swearing at each other on Big Brother or any of the other so-called 'reality' tv shows. This trip round the world on his own in a boat really was true reality !
At one point he was pursued by pirates and had to evade them by locking himself up in his bullet-proff glass cabin.
He also had to deal with a broken boom, broken tiller, broken bulkhead, broken rigging and was almost awshed over board.
Zac's father said : "He left thinking that he knew a lot about life, and the difference now is, he does. You look into his eyes; he's very much a deep thinker now. He tries to anticipate things more so now, before they happen."
The parents have in fact come in for some criticism for letting a 17 year old gop on such a dangerous trip "This is our whole life -- boating, and Laurence has felt a huge amount of responsibility," Marianne Sunderland, Zac's mother, said "Zac has had all the best safety equipment -- from satellite phones to his own meteorologists, and everyone to help him. With modern technology there's no reason why he shouldn't be successful."
Zac said the worst thing was being alone "there's no normalcy. Every day is different. Never being anywhere at a certain time is hard to get used to."
He bought his sailboat a 36-foot Islander named the Intrepid with $6000 he had saved up himself. He retrofitted the boat with the help of his father who is a shipwright.
The route he followed was - Marina Del Rey, California - Wakiki, Hawaii - Majuro, Marshall Islands - Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea - Darwin, Australia - Cocos-Keeling Islands, Territory of Australia - Rodrigues Island, Mauritius - Port Louis, Mauritius - Durban, South Africa - East London, South Africa - Port Elizabeth, South Africa - Mossel Bay, South Africa - Cape Town, South Africa - St. Helena, South Atlantic Ocean - Grenada - Colón, Panama - Panama City, Panama - Marina Chahue, Huatulco, Mexico - Puerto de la Navidad Marina, - Barra de Navidad, Mexico - Marina Del Rey, California