Column flashback … sailor Kojiro Shiraishi

Ed Odeven Reporting

June 10, 2007

SPORTS SCOPE

Shiraishi credits sailing career to mentor Tada

By ED ODEVEN

Published in The Japan Times
 
“Ask yourself when you last spent a single day with no human contact — then multiply this by 100!” — VELUX 5 OCEANS pre-race press release.

This was the challenge faced by eight extraordinary sailors during their around-the-globe competition, the VELUX 5 OCEANS, from October 2006 to May.

Kojiro Shiraishi, a Tokyo-born, Kamakura-raised sailor, completed the 48,280-km (30,000 mile) odyssey in 118 days, 1 hour, 42 minutes, reaching Bilbao, Spain, aboard Spirit of Yukoh in second place behind Bernard Stamm of Switzerland, who got there 15 days earlier.

There were only two stops along the way: Fremantle, Australia, located on the nation’s west coast, and Norfolk, Va. In between, the sailors braved the conditions — isolation, storms, winds, heat, cold — all the while managing themselves and their 18.2-meter…

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