Rescued sailor Susie Goodall would do it all again ‘in a heartbeat’

The 29-year-old thanked all the people involved in her rescue after her boat capsized during a solo round-the-world race.

Susie Goodall walks into the waiting arms of her mother in Punta Arenas, Chile
Susie Goodall walks into the waiting arms of her mother in Punta Arenas, Chile

A British sailor who was rescued after her boat capsized during a solo round-the-world race has said she would do it again “in a heartbeat”.

Susie Goodall’s comments came hours after arriving back on dry land in the Chilean southern city of Punta Arenas on Friday, where she was met by her mother and brother.

The family smiled and hugged before they joined her in an ambulance for a medical check-up in the port city, which is located about 1,200 miles from Santiago.

The 29-year-old was the youngest entrant and the only woman in the Golden Globe competition that began on July 1 in Les Sables-d’Olonne, France.

A violent storm ripped off her mast and flung her yacht end over end on December 5.

Chile Susie Goodall
Solo sailor Susie Goodall disembarks (Joel Estay/AP)

Race officials were in regular radio contact with Ms Goodall, who was 2,000 miles west of Cape Horn near the southern tip of South America when the storm occurred.

She was rescued two days later by the Tian Fu, a cargo vessel from China.

In a statement on her website just hours later on Friday evening, Ms Goodall said despite her ordeal she would attempt the round-the-world sail again in a “heartbeat”.

She added: “If you asked me if I would do this again, now knowing what it’s really like, I would say yes in a heartbeat!

“You may ask why?! Some people just live for adventure – it’s human nature. And for me, the sea is where my adventure lies.

“Every seafarer understands the risks involved but that’s what makes us stronger and able to overcome other challenges in life.”

Ms Goodall thanked all the people who had helped rescue her, including the captain, crew and owners of Tian Fu.

She added: “After arriving in Punta Arenas today, I’m still a little wobbly both emotionally and physically as I find my land legs again.

“I arrived with a heavy heart, no longer a competitor in the Golden Globe Race – but here is certainly a lot better than the alternative.

“And I wouldn’t be here today without the incredible support and seamanship shown by so many people over the past 10 days.

“Sailing away from DHL Starlight was heartbreaking, she stood up valiantly to all that the elements had to throw at her and looked after me until the last.”

Ms Goodall said she was fighting back tears when she stepped off the Tian Fu and saw her mother and brother after 157 days alone at sea followed by her rescue and return to land.

She said her family had been her “rock” from day one when she signed up to the race and thanked them for all their support.

Ms Goodall added: “After 157 days alone at sea and a very emotional week to follow, I was fighting back the tears as I stepped off the ship and saw my mum and oldest brother.

“I have put them through a lot, and I know I have a lot of making up to do!

“But I want to thank them from the bottom of my heart for believing in and supporting me in the many, many ways they have – thank you.”

She said she did not know what was next on her horizon, apart from spending time with her friends and family over Christmas, but said she still had “fire in her belly”.

Ms Goodall added: “I can’t tell you what is next beyond spending time with family and friends over Christmas and enjoying a glass of glogg, but that fire in my belly is far from out, so watch this space…!”

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