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under pressure

“Incredibly, it got worse. On Christmas Eve, Crowhurst blundered badly. During a radio call he was again refusing to give a precise latitude and longitude position, saying he had not the time to take the relevant sights of the sun with his sextant.

Under pressure, he inexplicably said he was ‘somewhere off Cape Town’. Suddenly, with one careless stroke, he had lost any resemblance whatsoever between his actual and faked progress. His actual position was close to Brazil, still only two or three days’ normal sailing below the equator. He had yet to sail the entire length and width of the South Atlantic to get to where he had just claimed to be. The appalling predicament he had just put himself in was that he could not, now, give up without disgracing himself.”

Chris Eakin – A Race Too Far (2009)

(The tragedy of Donald Crowhurst and his fatal voyage in the Teignmouth Electron trimaran is well known. Inexperienced, under-prepared and over-confident, Crowhurst radioed false positions pretending to lead the 1968 Golden Globe single-handed around the world race. After his deception became obvious the boat was found adrift and unoccupied at 33°N 40°W.)