Recently on the Melbourne to Osaka pages, we interviewed Mr Jun Kanda, a competitor in the 2003 and 2007 double handed events. Jun is very active in yachting in his home port of Nagasaki where he runs an Ocean Cruising School and publishes a regular and informative blog. He’s brought to our attention a trip currently under way by a friend of his.
Seventy five year old Mr Ikuo Tateo has recently set sail from Japan on a non stop solo voyage to circumnavigate the world via the western route. Ikuo has lived in Osaka for many years and is well known at the Osaka Hokko Yacht Club. He is doing the voyage in a 30 foot Japanese designed sloop called “Eolia” that he purchased second hand over 40 years ago. Because the voyage will take him down to below 40 degrees south as well as under the Capes, some work has been done to strengthen the boat in several areas.
Ikuo set sail from Ogasawara Island on July 5th and his latest reported position was 7 deg 21 south 154 deg 30 east which puts him west of Bouganville Island. So far he’s averaged around 80 mile per day and if this continues, it should have him entering Bass Straight later this month. He is in daily contact with Japan via Ham Radio and has an Iridium phone on board.
Having previously circumnavigated the world via the eastern route, Ikuo is certainly proving himself to be a capable sailor. Now about to head down the east coast, a decision has yet to be made as to whether he will take "Eolia" below Tasmania or travel through Bass Straight as he plots his course for Cape Town. More news as it comes to hand.