Retirees prepare to embark on lifelong dream to sail around the world

Pair will compete in World ARC Rally

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - On January 4th, Brian Fox and Joel Heyne will embark on a once in a lifetime trip. "Many think, but few do and even people that say they're going to do it, typically, don't do it," said Fox.

Fox and Heyne will spend the next 16 months sailing around the world.

"All sailors want to sail around the world," Fox said.

They are competing in the World ARC Rally, an adventure that covers more than 26,000 nautical miles.

"I'll be glad when it starts because I'm tired of working on the boat getting ready," Fox said.

For more than a year, they have been prepping their 40-foot boat, the "American Spirit II."

"The longest leg we have, maybe the most boring one, is from Bali to Africa. It will take two months and we'll only have a stop in 4 different islands," said Fox. Which means limited access to fresh water and fuel, so they will make their own.

They have installed a water purifier that will convert salt water into fresh water, along with wind and hydro generators that will use the natural resources they have around them to charge the boat's batteries.

"When you're sailing long distances, the boat keeps moving 24 hours a day," Fox said, so there is always the potential for something to go wrong.

But the pair have a radar system to track weather and will sleep in shifts. They're confident in their equipment and anxious to get their once in a lifetime journey underway.

"I'm really excited about sailing around the world. I'm just so stoked to go. This is going to be a big adventure for me and a life long dream. I'm ready to go," said Heyne.

When the rally starts, you can track each individual boat by visiting this web site: .

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