Reporting Jessica Kartalija
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—He’s a homegrown sailor who took on an around-the-world challenge. Ryan Breymaier fell in love with sailing in Annapolis and is now living a life on the water.
Jessica Kartalija caught up with him in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean as he raced toward the finish line.
Imagine sailing 25,000 nautical miles in a non-stop race around the world from Barcelona, Spain. Ryan Breymaier of Annapolis is doing it and it at the helm.
A satellite linked WJZ to Breymaier’s yacht, Neutrogena, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
“We are a few hundred miles off the Brazilian coast about halfway up the coast from Brazil,” he said.
Breymaier and his German sailing partner braved extreme conditions in the world’s most dangerous seas.
“Fairly big storms with the biggest waves I have ever seen—40-45 foot waves and 50-60 mile an hour winds,” Breymaier said.
There are other round-the-world sailing races, but the Barcelona World Race is the only non-stop race with just two people on board.
Disaster struck when the keel broke on the Neutrogena.
“Lying on your stomach in a boat with hydraulic fluid covering you and trying to figure out what piece of a hundred part system is broken when you have no idea. You definitely have days when you wish you were at home,” he said.
Following the race from home was Breymaier’s mother Martha Fisher. Communicating via email and Skype, Fisher saw her son lost more than 20 pounds.
“He is a big guy,” she said. “He’s size 6’4″, and now his face looks really thin.”
Breymaier first discovered a passion for sailing while at St. Mary’s College in Southern Maryland.
He moved to Annapolis to pursue his love of sailing and has been there ever since.
After more than four months on the water, Breymaier and his co-skipper were fifth to arrive back in Barcelona, an incredible accomplishment in his first race around the world.
“Just a testament to the team we have that we were able to do this,” he said. “I am just super happy to be here really.”
Breymaier now has his sights set on another round the world race next year that he’d do all alone with no stops at all.