Ryan Breymaier’s Top 10 Sailing Essentials


Photo by Boris Herrmann, Team Neutrogena

Professional sailor Ryan Breymaier first took to a sailboat while attending St. Mary's College of Maryland. After graduation he started sailing professionally and has never looked back. Currently, the 35-year-old is participating as the lone American in the Barcelona World Race, a double-handed, nonstop race around the world that takes nearly 90 days to complete. Halfway around, he shares the top 10 must-have items for an around-the-world voyage.
–Michael Webster

10. A Good, Fast, Strong Boat
We cannot overstate how nice it is to have a boat which is a proven performer, and strong enough that we do not worry about every creak and groan. If we could go on a little diet, we would have the perfect boat.

9. Plenty of Dried Meat
It is cold, and we are in the high latitudes. Eat what the Eskimos eat. Beef jerky is good stuff, and lots of protein in a small package. What's not to like?

8. My Wedding Ring
Firmly in place to remind me of what is important in life. When it's all said and done, if it wasn't for my wife, Nicola, none of this would have been possible for me. Behind every successful man there is a good woman.

7. Drytech Freeze-Dried Food
This stuff comes from Norway, where it is sold to the Norwegian military. It is THE BEST freeze dried I have ever eaten, and I think I have tried them all. I would not go offshore without it.

6. A Small Nuclear Reactor for Power
Our biggest reason for not having creature comforts on board is a lack of lightweight electricity to power them. If only there was a nuclear reactor small enough that could replace all our other sources of power and give us heat as well! Just a dream for the moment…

5. All New Sails to Start the Trip
The couple of sails we have on board that are not new for this race are constantly worrying, as we have already torn one, and the other we use a lot and cannot baby the way we would like. If I could do it over again, I would sacrifice other areas of the budget to make sure all the sails were new.

4. A Heater for the Boat (I don't have one, but am feeling pretty dumb)
We did not put a heater on so that we could save weight, and we wear damp clothes now because of it.

3. Electronic Book Reader (Again don't have one, but feeling dumb)
Enough said I think on a 100-day sailing trip. 

2. Warm Waterproof Slippers for Inside the Boat
This is no joke. I bought some North Face slippers in Barcelona to wear inside the boat when it is cold, as there is plenty of condensation inside, so most surfaces are freezing and damp. They looked great, but who would have known the soles were not waterproof….

1. Crystal Ball for Determining Wind Shifts and Weather Patterns
The weather is everything to us onboard Neutrogena, and we spend hours a day agonizing over even the tiniest decisions regarding the weather, and which direction the wind will turn next. Since I really don't go in for religion, prayer is out when a decision needs to be made. That leaves a crystal ball as the best alternative, and just as certain as our decision making on board.