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Zac Sunderland, who is sailing around the world, prepares to cross Atlantic

February 11, 2009 | 10:10 am

Zac Sunderland snaps a self-portrait.

Where in the world is Zac Sunderland?

The Thousand Oaks adventure sailor is still in Cape Town, South Africa, where he has been living it up since safely rounding the Cape of Good Hope two weeks ago.

But the parties, concerts and many friends the 17-year-old has made must be left behind, as it's time to resume his unlikely quest to become the youngest person to solo-circumnavigate the planet.

(Zac, it should be pointed out, has also been working extremely hard getting his boat in shape and outfitted for the remainder for his voyage.)

Unlikely, because England's Mike Perham, who is slightly younger than Zac, is attempting the same feat aboard a much larger, faster boat.

Interestingly, both are in Cape Town, though Zac is headed west and Perham east. They met for lunch at the local yacht club, and that has been the extent of their relationship.

"He's a nice guy, but he's more like a sailor you see in the yacht clubs, doing everything by the book," Zac said in an interview this morning. "And I'm more like a thrill seeker who just goes out and does it."

Said Perham in his blog:

"Once berthed in the Royal Cape Yacht Club (with its fantastic facilities) it was time to meet Zac Sunderland and his Dad.

"We had lunch together and it was so great to have my first meal on land with them. We have so much in common, they're such down-to-earth people and we shared several funny stories. I showed Zac around Totallymoney.com and I hope to have a look around Intrepid, Zac's boat later this week."

Perham's boat, named after his sponsor, is a 50-foot racing yacht. Sunderland's boat, which is not sponsored, is an old 36-foot Islander, built more for cruising.

Perham, who is expected to complete his journey in early spring, had originally planned a nonstop voyage. But he has been forced to port more than once for repairs, and he has a rough Southern Ocean sail ahead of him.

Zac with friends inside Intrepid in Cape Town, South Africa.

Sunderland, who expects to arrive in Marina del Rey in late spring or early summer, has these legs remaining:

-- Cape Town to St. Helena, 1,697 nautical miles
-- St. Helena to Port of Spain, Trinidad, 3,744 miles
-- Port of Spain to Colon, Panama, 1,149 miles
-- Panama to California, 2,970 miles

Outposts wishes both sailors a safe and speedy voyage.

-- Pete Thomas

Photos: Zac Sunderland snaps a self-portrait (top) and Zac with friends inside Intrepid in Cape Town, South Africa. Credit: Laurence Sunderland