Jeanne Socrates is heading north after passing the French Polynesian Islands. (File submitted/Jeanne Socrates)

Victoria senior sails past Tahiti on her journey to break world record

Jeanne Socrates is on track to be the oldest person to sail the world on a solo trip

Jeanne Socrates is heading north after passing the French Polynesian Islands on the 280th day of her global sail.

The 76-year-old Victoria resident is aiming to break the world record as the oldest person to sail around the world on a solo trip. She already earned the title as the oldest woman to do so in 2013.

Socrates launched her ship, Nerida, on Oct. 2, 2018, from Victoria. Now, on day 280, she is just shy of the equator on her journey home.

ALSO READ: Senior sailor en route to Victoria after near-disaster during trip around the world

In the past few weeks, Socrates faced rough waters while heading towards Tahiti from New Zealand.

“It’s been rough now for so many days, I’ve lost count … and seas are set to continue tossing us around at just over 4 [metres] for another two days at least,” she wrote in her blog. “The best, safest place to be is on or in my bunk – moving around the heeled, ever-lurching boat in these very big, rough seas is difficult, so kept to a minimum.”

On day 280 of her sail, Jeanne Socrates just passed the French Polynesian Islands (mmsn-shiptrak.herokuapp.com)

During the rough weather, she’s been able to use her radio to stay in contact with people and even came across some old friends.

“I was delighted to be able to chat to friends from two different boats – one of which I’d not seen for three years or more but suddenly heard their boat name mentioned by someone else – so we ended up making contact,” she wrote. “I’m also chatting daily to amateur radio friends … Am I lonely? Not at all.”

ALSO READ: Victoria’s record-breaking senior sailor hits rough waters

Finally, after weeks of lurching, Socrates found warm temperatures and smooth waters – though still not without a surprise or two.

“[I] suddenly noticed quite a large flying fish behind the steering wheel that must have flown on board overnight – bit [sic]. enough to eat but now rather dried up.”

As she continues north now, Socrates will focus on repairing her main sail, which has several holes and tears in it from the wind.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


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