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Young sailor makes history

JAN 10 -- A British teenager has become the youngest person to sail single-handed across the Atlantic.

After being at sea for six weeks Michael Perham, 14, of Potter’s Bar, England, sailed his Tide 28, Cheeky Monkey, and put in at the Caribbean island of Antigua on Jan. 03, according to information on his Web site. He had set off from Gibraltar Nov. 18.

"It feels absolutely fantastic being back on dry land — absolutely brilliant," Perham says in news reports. “I'm looking forward to a comfortable bed and a great meal. I don't care what it is as long as it is not out of a can."

Perham was followed on his passage across the Atlantic by his father, Peter Perham, who is 47, aboard another Tide 28, the site says. The pair had planned to complete the 3,500-mile journey in about four weeks but made stops at the Canary and Cape VerdeIslands for repairs.

The younger Perham, who says he took up sailing when he was six years old, had wanted to sail across the Atlantic for nearly five years, inspired by another British teen, Sebastian Clover, who completed the passage solo at age 15, he says.

Jason Fell