I Spend, Therefore I Am

Outside magazine, September 1996


I Spend, Therefore I Am


Fresh off an aborted attempt to become the first person to pilot a hot-air balloon around the world (see "Balloonatics"), enormously wealthy Chicago commodities dealer Steve Fossett set his sights on the sea last June and succeeded in breaking a 143-year-old trans-Pacific sailing mark. In his seemingly endless quest to chalk up as many world records as possible, Fossett and a three-man crew sailed the 60-foot trimaran Lakota from San Francisco to Yokohama, Japan, in 19 days and 15 hours, shattering the old record by two weeks. Undeterred by recent criticisms of his motives, Fossett is unabashedly continuing his record-gathering campaign. "The Pacific is the most fertile territory for ocean records," he states flatly. "That's why we came."

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