Soon after I returned to Melbourne, Jesse Martin sent me an email asking if I was interested in having a drink. Of course I was. We met at the Grace Darling in Collingwood, which was rather fitting for two Melbourne-based sailors both born in 1981. I remember reading Jesse's book soon after his epic solo circumnavigation... I had zero interest in sailing. I was simply attracted to the adventure of it all, and also the fact that we were the same age, both doing such immensely different things... But, perhaps in reality, Jesse's voyage, and subsequent book is really what planted the seed.
For those that need a really quick catch up; Jesse completed his solo circumnavigation in 1999 with great success, and became the youngest solo nonstop circumnavigator on the planet. Afterwards he went off on a voyage with a bunch of friends, which wasn't quite as successful (in the traditional sense). His proposed group circumnavigation fell less than a year after departing Melbourne - However Jesse made both a documentary, and wrote a book about the experience. That documentary, '5 Lost at Sea' didn't air until 2010. After the Kijana adventure, Jesse went on co-own and run a yacht charter company focusing on the areas around PNG.
Fast-forward nearly a year after our first meeting in early 2010 (with a few more in between), and Jesse is off on a brand new adventure. This time it's slightly different. There are no big sponsors. There are no great expectations from others. There is no grand plan other than 'to get to the other side', and there are no promises. Jesse has bought himself one of the world's most iconic small boats for doing exactly this kind of trip: The humble Contessa 26. Setting off this year from Panama, he will cross the Pacific on his own terms, alone; or however it turns out.
I've asked Jesse if I could ask him a few things about his trip, life, sailing, the past, and turning thirty this year. An interview of sorts. And in order to open it up and hopefully ask some really great questions, I'm opening it up to everyone who reads my blog. I'd like to focus on his upcoming trip, however, I think if you have some questions about Jesse you've never heard answered, and would like to ask him - This is your chance. Please ask your question in the comments field below.
Questions will be open for exactly one week - After that, they'll be locked down, and I will compile a list of your questions, and add a few of my own own. Not all questions will be put to Jesse - Only the best will be chosen - They will be moderated, so please do not ask anything rude or inappropriate, because I will just delete them.
These questions will be asked on camera in a video interview with Jesse before he heads off in Feb.