Extreme sailing: Captain walks on the keel of his four ton sailboat [video]

If you’ve been following Geek.com for any length of time, you know about our love of obscure extreme sports. These are activities that make downhill mountain biking, sky diving, backcountry skiing, and other such activities look like a stroll in the park, on a rather pleasant day, with your lover on your arm humming a wonderful tune.

Professional sailing captain Alex Thomson brings new meaning to the phrase “like a boss” with his recent “keel-walk” stunt that took place on his Hugo Boss-sponsored sailboat earlier this month. If you are unfamiliar with what a keel is or does, it’s a long fin underneath a boat that helps to keep it from flipping over when putting its weight into tacking. Of all the things that it’s meant to do, serving as a gangplank isn’t one of them at least to normal people. Thomson chooses to be different, however, in the fact that he had his crew put the boat on its side under full wind so he could walk on it in a Hugo Boss suit as part of a publicity campaign for the clothing company.

Keel walk

Hailing from the UK, Thomson has been sailing boats his entire life with his professional experience spanning the last twenty years. Specializing in around-the-world solo sailing, he is accustomed to looking dangerous situations in the face. When asked why he wanted to try to walk on the keel of his boat while it was traveling at 19 knots (about 21 mph), his answer was “I’ve wanted to for a few years now.” Simple as that.

To understand how risky this maneuver was, you have to understand the specifics about the boat. Weighing in at over 4 tons, getting hit by the sixty-foot racing vessel would feel the same as getting hit by a charging elephant. When you add in the fact that even if Thomson survived such an impact, there would be significant danger of drowning. Long story short, keel-walking is not something you want to try at home.

The good news is that Thomson was successful in his attempt to “walk the plank” so to speak, which is pretty remarkable. What is even more amazing is the fact that this is his second time doing it. A few years back he made the attempt and was also successful, but all he had to show for it was a few photographs that the general public called questionable. Many people accused Thomson of photoshopping the image, so he wanted to capture the event on video this time to silence the critics. Pretty sure he proved his case, like a boss.

More at Alex Thomson Racing, via My Modern Met



Similar news:
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>