One of the great Kiwi battlers is planning to have another go
at becoming the oldest man to circumnavigate the globe solo
on a yacht.
Former Dunedin resident Stanley Paris (76) set off to break
the record last year but was forced to abandon the attempt
earlier this year after equipment on his yacht, Kiwi
Spirit, began to fail.
There were also concerns about the integrity of the rigging
system on the yacht, and his health and safety after he fell
and cracked several ribs as he prepared to enter the Southern
Dr Paris had hoped to become the oldest person to sail
fastest solo around the world from Bermuda, by breaking the
record set in 1986 by the late Dodge Morgan, who did it in
150 days, at age 54, on American Promise.
He plans to try again, leaving on November 8 or soon after,
depending on the weather.
Dr Paris said he learnt much from his first attempt.
''It was an adventure, an exciting, challenging adventure, to
be all alone at sea for an intended 150 days.
''But this time it's unfinished business.
''Those 50 days alone, and with the experiences of handling
the yacht in all conditions, as well as the managing of
things that went wrong that should never have gone wrong, I
learnt a great deal and I am anxious to try again.
''I will be better prepared and so will the boat.''
The departure date would be according to a 10-day weather
projection this time.
Last time, for family, friends and spectators, the departure
was as close to the advertised date as possible, but that had
him arriving in Bermuda with little wind.
''Five days after rounding Bermuda, I was already two days
behind the record pace set by Dodge Morgan on American
''This time I shall wait for a favourable weather window.''
Changes were being made to the boat and how it would be
sailed, he said.
''Using poles for downwind sailing, changing the sail
inventory, making the boat bulletproof in so many ways will
all add to my confidence that the boat and I will not only
survive, but that we will do well in all conditions.''
It is fair to say, Dr Paris means business this time.
He is already in training for his second attempt and believes
he will be in great shape come departure day.
As part of his training, he plans to swim the English Channel
again at the end of August - this time in a relay with five
others who are over 70.
Dr Paris had Kiwi Spirit specially designed by New
Zealander Bruce Farr, because he believed otherwise it would
be impossible for a man in his 70s to mount a successful
Using his experience in physical therapy and issues related
to safety and ergonomics, Dr Paris developed an owner's brief
that defined comfort, safety and ease of handling.
The result is a 19.2m-long, 25.6m-high vessel with a
retractable bowsprit, lithium ion phosphate batteries, wind,
solar and water regeneration, three comfortable cabins and an