Santiago (AFP) – British Golden Globe race sailor Susie Goodall — who was rescued from the Southern Ocean by a Hong Kong-flagged ship after her yacht lost its mast in a huge storm — arrived back on dry land in Chile on Friday.
Relatives were waiting for Goodall in Punta Arenas, her sponsor DHL announced.
“I’d like to express my deepest gratitude to all those involved in my rescue and to DHL for supporting me throughout my journey,” Goodall said in a statement.
“Although I wasn’t planning on ending up in Chile, it’s great to be here now.”
Goodall was brought back to Punta Arenas by the cargo ship Tian Fu, which plucked her from the stormy seas earlier this month.
The youngest competitor in the race and the only woman, the 29-year-old was briefly knocked unconscious when towering waves upended her yacht DHL Starlight in early December, tearing off its mast and trashing much of her equipment.
At that time, she had spent 157 days at sea, sailing about 32,000 kilometers (20,000 miles) in the Golden Globe Race — a grueling solo circumnavigation of the world with no modern technology save communications equipment.
She had done about two thirds of the race when she ran into trouble trying to navigate the southern Pacific’s notorious Roaring Forties.
In text messages to race organizers, she said: “The boat is destroyed. I can’t make up a jury rig. The only thing left is the hull and deck which remain intact.
“Taking a hammering! Wondering what on Earth I’m doing out here.”
The race participants set off in July from Les Sables-d’Olonne on the west coast of France.
The route takes competitors south through the Atlantic and eastward — passing South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope, Australia’s Cape Leeuwin and Chile’s Cape Horn — before heading back up through the Atlantic to France.
The first boats are expected back in April next year.