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Play featuring Cai Luong artists' life, career to make its debut in May

Play featuring Cai Luong artists' life, career to make its debut in May

A cai luong play adapted by Nguyen Phuong from the work titled “Eclipse” by scriptwriter Le Duy Hanh will premiere at Cong Nhan theater in HCMC’s district 1 on May 4.

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Home » News » World

Man hopes to be the first Vietnamese to sail around the world

Posted at: TUEsday - 30/06/2015 09:24 - Viewed: 815
Man hopes to be the first Vietnamese to sail around the world

Man hopes to be the first Vietnamese to sail around the world

The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race bills itself as “the world's longest ocean race at 40,000 nautical miles” and takes up to 325 days to complete. In the event, 650 participants compete on 12 identical, 70-foot ocean-racing yachts that will set sail from the UK, crossing through several oceans and 16 port cities. It is a physically grueling task that takes mental willpower, determination and a lot of guts.

So what is a 35-year-old, father of one with absolutely no sailing experience doing signing up for this race? In his words, it's to pay homage to the Vietnamese boat people who came before him.

 

Truong at the helm during his first week of training in the United Kingdom. (Photo courtesy Tony Truong)

 

“I wanted to use my participation as a token to pay tribute to the Vietnamese boat people, which included members of my family,” said Tony Truong, a biochemist in the cosmetics industry in Montreal. “I am just an ordinary person wanting to do something extraordinary.”

Truong said he heard about the race on the radio and decided to take a chance.

“Its a huge deal,” Truong said. “In the beginning, my family thought I was out of my mind, which is understandable. I mentioned it and my mom said, 'Why are you doing this? You have a job, you bought a house, you have a daughter. Why would you go and do something like this and risk your life?' It's been difficult to explain, but they are finally coming around.”

 

Truong and his teammates learn new techniques aboard the clipper during training. (Photo courtesy Tony Truong)

 

According to Truong, if he successfully completes the entire trip, he will be the first Vietnamese to sail around the world, keeping the boat people as his focus.

“I want to pay tribute to them by emulating their courage, and living out their message of overcoming obstacles,” Truong said.

Truong spent two weeks at Solent –  the strait that separates the Isle of Wight from the mainland of England – for the first two phases of training to learn basic sailing techniques and how to survive  on the water for prolonged amounts of time. He has two more training sessions before his official spot on the team is secured. The boat he will be on is called the Telemed+ Clipper, and will be helmed by the first Canadian woman appointed skipper in the race, Diane Reid. Each boat will have 23 crew members.

The Clipper Round the World Race is open to all amateurs and sailors but has a hefty entry fee of $70,966 U.S. Truong said he is hoping to procure sponsors to help offset the fees. He is also raising funds for the race's partner charities, Make-A-Wish-Foundation and UNICEF United Kingdom.

Truong will have to take an unpaid leave of absence to journey around the globe in this once-in-a-lifetime adventure. The tough part he says, is leaving behind his wife, Dam Khanh Van and their 4-year-old daughter, Kloe.

 

Truong (left) with his wife Dam Khanh Van (right) and 4-year-old daughter, Kloe. (Photo courtesy Tony Truong)

 

“My wife is 50/50,” Truong said. “She supports my decision, which I appreciate, but she's reluctant. It's hard but I thought about it and I told her, 'When you become a parent it's for life. If I wait and do it in two years versus now, it wont be any easier.' I will miss my family a lot and I hope that my daughter will understand.”

The race is split up into eight legs, and each participant can sign on to one leg or all eight. Truong chose to do the entire eight with the race beginning at the end of August.

“I wholeheartedly committed,” he said. “I signed the contract. I passed the two levels of training. I made the first payment. I just feel if you commit, you have to commit to the whole thing. A month or two is a holiday. But if you go through 11 months, you're going through different oceans, different weather and conditions on a tiny boat with 22 strangers and it's a completely different challenge. So I want to go through it all. I'm in it to win.”

Truong, whose aunt and uncle left Vietnam following the war by boat, said he hopes to make a positive impact on the next generation of Vietnamese .

 

Family photo of Truong and his family after they first arrived to Canada after emigrating from Vietnam. (Photo courtesy Tony Truong)

 

“My family gave up everything for us to have freedom,” Truong said. “The future they hoped for us to have, we got. It all stemmed from the sacrifice. You have to give back to the community that raised you and this is my way. “

The series is divided into 8 legs and 16 individual races. The winner of each stage is awarded 12 points, the second-place finisher receives11 points and so on down to one point for 12th place. The yacht with the highest cumulative points wins the Clipper Race trophy.

The race will begin  Aug.30 at St. Katharine Docks in London and last roughly one month between each port, with the first stop in Rio De Janeiro. From there, the boats will sail to Cape Town, South Africa, and head to Albany, Australia. There they'll participate in the Sydney Harbor Race and head up the Australian coast. Leg five will go up through Indonesia and Singapore and the South China Sea.

 

 A map illustrates the route the sailors will take in the 40,000 mile race that will take 11 months to complete. (Photo courtesy of Clipper Around the World)

 

According to Truong, their next stop would be close to Vietnam, and though it has not been confirmed, the boats could port in Vietnam. From there, they will head to Quingdao, China, and cross the Pacific Ocean toward Seattle. The route then takes the boats across the Panama Canal to a stop in New York. Then, they will sail across the Atlantic to Londonderry in Northern Ireland and finish the race in London via the River Thames.

“The prize for the winning boat is a trophy,” Truong said. “It's more about the achievement. I'm going in it to win.”

That mentality earned him the honorary team “cheerleader” title, and Truong said he hopes to keep the morale up through the journey. He said he knows it won't just be fun and games and that the rigors of ocean life can take its toll.

“I believe if you have a purpose, it'll give you the strength to go through,” Truong said. “For sure there will be days that I will just want to be home. I know there are a lot of ups and downs, but this is something close to my heart. I find a reason to do it.”

To find out more and follow Truong's journey, click here: http://moderntribesmen.com

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To contact the writer: Thuyphan@nguoi-viet.com


Source: NV
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