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Archive for Sunday, August 22, 2010

Teen sets sail in secrecy on solo trip

August 22, 2010

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— A 14-year-old Dutch sailor departed in secrecy from Gibraltar Saturday on her quest to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world — avoiding the media because, her manager said, she didn’t want the attention.

Laura Dekker was in good spirits as she started sailing her 38-foot ship “Guppy” from the British territory bordering the southwestern tip of Spain, on a trip expected to last a year or more, her manager, Peter Klarenbeek, said.

The attempt has been criticized by Dutch child protection authorities, who questioned the wisdom of a child risking the world’s oceans alone. Dekker’s departure itself was kept a secret from international media, who descended on Portugal but failed to capture images of it.

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