The British sailing magazine Sailing Today follows a couple as they give their Oyster 56 Raya a complete make over before setting off to sail over the horizon. They spend nearly $250,000 but in the end the boat was better than new.
Richard and Roz Smith seem rather surprised to find themselves on board their Oyster 56, bobbing gently on a pontoon at Shamrock Quay, Southampton. It is the boat they have been refitting for the past nine months ahead of a “four-or-five-year” circumnavigation.
They are surprised in part because the long, expensive fit-out work is finally drawing to a close (although there are winch bits on the saloon table and air-con ducting protruding from the paneling). But also surprised to be taking off for such an ambitious trip by themselves.
“We’ve chartered all our lives,” Richard says.
“Twelve hours is our longest passage – we’ve just been playing at sailing.” Roz chimes in. “We’re not yachties, we’re waterbabies… diving is our thing.”
They’re both day skippers, and have done a flurry of sea survival and medical courses recently, but Roz admits that she’s not too hot on the technical side of sailing. So what on earth possessed them to buy a blue water yacht and get involved in the refit themselves? Read more.