Coastguard in Cornwall guided rescue of sailor off Cape Horn
Susie Goodall was taking part in a round-the-world race when her boat was dismasted in heavy seas
A BRITISH woman who was knocked unconscious during a violent storm in the Southern Ocean has been rescued, thanks to a UK coastguard.
Susie Goodall, 29, was sailing solo in a round-the-world race when her yacht flipped over and had its mast destroyed two days ago and 2,000 miles from Cape Horn, the southernmost point of South America.
Falmouth Coastguard received a long-distance distress signal from her and raised the alarm with their Chilean counterparts.
A cargo ship that was sailing from China to Argentina diverted to reach her, and was with her by yesterday. Ms Goodall reported that it was dark when the cargo ship, the Hong Kong-registered MV Tian Fu, arrived at her location but that she could see its lights.
The sailor, who is the only female and the youngest person in the Golden Globe Race – which bans the use of satellite navigation – was last night said to be “safe and secure”.
She said her boat had been “totally and utterly gutted” and said she had longed for a cup of tea, but her cooker was broken so she could not make one.
A spokesman from the Falmouth Coastguard said: “We have what you call a long-range search and rescue, so when the alert goes off we get the alert with the information and find out who and where it belongs to, find their position and then alert the relevant coastguard. We then liaise with them to give them information.
“It went to us because it was registered to us – she’s from Cornwall so we are looking after the long-range signal from her boat.”
When she came to after being knocked out, Ms Goodall sent a series of text messages on Wednesday describing her plight.
At 8.29am British time she texted: “Taking a hammering! Wondering what on earth I’m doing out here.” She then sent her position. Four hours later she added: “Dismasted. Hull OK. No form of jury rig. Total loss.”
She later updated her position and then wrote: “Interior total wreck. Life raft OK.” She also alerted officials to her injury, writing: “Nasty head bang as boat pitchpoled.”
The race, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Sir Robin Knox-johnston’s historic first solo non-stop circumnavigation, began on July 1 in Les Sables-d’olonne, France, with 18 sailors each planning to sail about 30,000 miles alone and non-stop.
Susie Goodall is winched aboard the cargo ship MV Tian Fu off Cape Horn in the Southern Ocean after her boat, left, capsized