Jinxed Jeanne

Jeanne Scrates, 66, who was shipwrecked 60 miles short of a circumnavigation on the Pacific coast of Mexico, has been thwarted in her second bid to sail solo and this time, non-stop round the world. She had to pull in to Cape Town for rigging repairs on 10th Dec, despite having successfully overcome a mix of different problems along the way on her 61-day nonstop sail down the South Atlantic from Puerto Calero in Lanzarote. 

Now long delays there have stymied her bid to round Cape Horn as it would be winter before she could sail that far. Jeanne writes: ‘I’ve been trapped trying to deal with the problem of an engine with water in all four cylinders (probably due to an anti-siphon valve being placed too low for the rough seas and weather I encountered on my way here).In addition, I’ve sorted out the original problems and added a few other jobs that I’d intended leaving to a later date.

‘Unfortunately, with such a long delay caused by the engine problem, continuing on eastabout now to Cape Horn would not be sensible in view of the shorter days & worsening weather of the southern winter I’d be facing by the time I reached there – in 3 months’ time or so..  So although I’m about to leave now and head east into the Southern Ocean, to pass by S. Australia, I’ll probably then head up the Tasman Sea to pass north of NZ and then on towards Hawaii.

‘I had hoped to be able to get to the start in June of the Single Handed TransPac race from San Francisco to Kauai (Hawaii) (in which I competed in ’06 and was entered for, but did not start due to losing my boat, in ’08), as an alternative to rounding C. Horn now.  But even that is looking dubious due to the frustratingly extended delay here, although I shall shortly be heading East and then North to see how quickly I can make the passage toward San Francisco. I may well pause in Kauai to greet the racers finishing there in Hanalei Bay if my passage timing looks impossible to make the San Francisco race start – but I AM applying for a rating from the N. California YRA to be ready, just in case I make a good enough speed on passage to get there in time!

‘Either way, I’m rethinking my options for another attempt at a ‘nonstop around’ later this year –  from/to Victoria, B.C.(starting in early October) looks a likely scenario, to get to the Horn two months or so later, in December, & then on eastabout via the other Great Capes.  I’m sure you can well understand how I’ve been feeling, with such a long delay since getting here – it will have been nigh on three months by the time I finally get away in a week or so – around the end of February.’

Pic: Geoff Sharman