EU Australia Online - News & information from the capital of Europe direct to Australian businesses

Another Jess? Dutch Sailor-girl Gets OK For Trip …

  • July 28th, 2010
  • Posted by EUEditor

dutch-girl-laura-dekker.jpgWhat is it with young teenage girls these days? Another one, Laura Dekker (picture), aged 14, has just been cleared by a court in the Netherlands, to go it alone on the high seas.

jess-watson1.jpg  jess-boat2.jpgShe was taken into child protection custody last year by authorities trying to prevent her challenging the round-the-world record set by the lone, sixteen-year-old Australian, Jessica Watson (picture, with pink boat), in May.

Laura’s parents, who gave birth to her on board a yacht in the South Pacific, support the trip, and plan to see her off in her small yacht, the Guppy, 8.3-metres, in a fortnight.dutch-guppy-laura-d.jpg

The court evaluated the boat, Laura’s sea training and survival skills, and her emotional well-being — before letting her go.

dutch-east-indiamen.jpgIf she comes our way, Laura Dekker will not be the first Dutch mariner to brave the Roaring Forties over the last 400 years or so. Memories of the East Indiamen live on.

And in the present day one other girl sailor, the American Abby Sunderland, 16, came to grief in those waters, in the Southern Indian Ocean, last month.

Her boat foundered, with an Australian aircraft sent down to locate her, and she was later picked up by a fishing boat.

See also, EUAustralia Online; “Weekend quote: Jess Watson”, 16.5.10; “SPORTS: One snooker champion, one top sailor”, 6.5.10.

Pictures,, Ludort Backhuysen painting, kurst-feur-alle