Great achievement but no record

Despite completing an epic circumnavigatiion of the world last week when he returned to Marina del Rey in Los Angeles, 17-year-old Zac Sunderland has NOT broken Jesse Martin's record as the youngest to sail single-handed round the world, as reported on this website and in many other media outlets at the time.

The officially recognised body for ratifying sailing records is the World Speed Sailing Record Council, an ISAF committee specifically set up to ensure consistency in rules for such events. According to John Reed of WSSRC, the voyage was not even being monitored by the WSSRC. He added that the route taken (via the Panama Canal instead of Cape Horn) and the occasional use of the engine (for getting into and out of harbours) meant the journey did not qualify and “bears no comparison, for example, with the achievement of Jesse Martin”. In addition, the “youngest” category has been discontinued by WSSRC.

To his credit, Zac isn't the one claiming a world record under the WSSRC rules, although he may apply to the Guiness Book of World Records for recognition.

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