Hamble teacher joins Team Adventure

Janet Bradley has joined the 110-foot catamaran for the voyage of her life

Friday April 6th 2001, Author: Andy Rice, Location: United Kingdom
A school teacher from Hamble is to join Cam Lewis and the 110-foot catamaran Team Adventure for her next voyage, retracing the course Christopher Columbus took on his voyage to the Americas.

Janet Bradley, 41, and an American teacher, Susan Rieck, 50, from Wisconsin, were chosen from amongst hundreds of applicants who sought the job through Monster.com, the global online careers site which sponsors the catamaran.

Bradley and Rieck will communicate daily from the big catamaran with students on both sides of the Atlantic, using the ship's satellite communications system to transmit written information and digital photographs via the web.

Betsy Alison, hostess of the American cable television show "Boating Today" and a five-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, is also joining the crew and will write a regular column for the team's web page.

Bradley is an English and Media Studies teacher at Bridgemary Community School, in Gosport, Hampshire. Born and raised in South Africa, she taught in schools in Port Elizabeth before moving to Britain 18 months ago.

A sailor for the last eight years, Bradley sailed extensively in South Africa and has raced keelboats on the south coast of England and in Ireland.

"This was a pretty awesome experience," said Bradley today after a shakedown and crew training sail before the boat sets out from Palma. "I was surprised by the smoothness of the ride, in these conditions at least. I was expecting something rougher and noisier. I'm really looking forward to the days ahead."

Rieck, also a sailor, said: "This is a marvellous machine, an extraordinary ride. This is much bigger than the boats I'm accustomed to sailing in and I am impressed by its acceleration under sail, and its stability. There is also a lot of work attached to sailing this boat. This is what I expected, but it was more than I expected."

"We're pleased to welcome these two fine teachers and sailors aboard Team Adventure," said Lewis. "It is the mission of Team Adventure to motivate young people to learn and excel, to develop their awareness of the world around them. With this voyage we hope to bring to life for kids the determination and the achievements of Columbus so many years ago."

Betsy Alison has a highly successful track record in a variety of dinghies, one-design keelboats and offshore boats, but this is the first time she has sailed aboard a big oceangoing multihull. "When Cam Lewis offered me the opportunity to sail transatlantic, and on the classic Columbus route, I jumped at the chance," she said. "This is a boat that is redefining the limits of sailing performance and I'm looking forward to telling its story to readers, web browsers and my television audience."

The modern tradition of the "Route of Discovery" was established in 1984 with a sailing race from Spain to San Salvador. Columbus and his three ships, the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria, had departed Spain in 1492 from Porto.

Skipper Lewis is not looking for any sailing records on this voyage, but he and his crew will be concentrating on Columbus' records. Using extensive documentation of Columbus' voyage, the crew and the guest teachers will emphasize similarities such as basic marlinspike ropework, and startling changes such as satellite global positioning systems, that have occurred over the intervening 500 years.

Reports from the boat will chronicle the day's events, both then and now. All of this information will be posted on the Team Adventure website and students will be asked to answer questions, plot positions, and develop interactive chat-sessions with the boat.

For more information on the voyage, try Team Adventure's official web site.

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