Seven members of the Japanese Explorers’ Club, Yuka Kobayoshi, Motoko Sato, Haruka Yoshimori. Yoshitaka Suzuki, Kiyotaka Terada, Yoshitou Yamanoha and Team Leader Kichiemon Nakagawa, set themselves a challenge of sailing a 14 foot dinghy from Donaghadee, Co Down to Portpatrick in Scotland and back.  The Explorers’ Club is “…a community for gentlemen and ladies who aim at going beyond their limits, aiming  upwards and honouring those who think that every second should be pleasant while caring for others…”. 

Having rotated crews they successfully completed the voyage in 14 hours and 19 minutes.  This voyage was the last in the 7 Oceans Project and other voyages included Hayama to Enoshima, Japan, Dover Strait, the Strait of Gibraltar and the Catharina Strait, Brazil.  The purpose the project is to raise interest in protection of the oceans, .

The group had purchased the boat from Chris and Vania Zammit, members of Carlingford Lough Yacht Club, who had advertised their 420 sailing dinghy for sale on Gumtree and got a response from Japan.  Chris said “I thought it was a hoax at first until I received the deposit.”  But the deal was completed and the 420 was taken to Donaghadee for launching.  On completion the group donated the boat back to Carlingford Lough Yacht Club, so it is back to where it started, only with a few more exciting sea miles on the clock.