Heartbreak for Gosport sailor as he retires from world record attempt

Alex Alley, 48, from Alverstoke, on his boat the Pixel Flyer. Picture: Sarah Standing (180802-7649)
Alex Alley, 48, from Alverstoke, on his boat the Pixel Flyer. Picture: Sarah Standing (180802-7649)
0
Have your say

A SAILOR who was looking to beat the solo non-stop round-the-world record has abandoned his adventure.

Alex Alley, 48 from Gosport, was sailing around the world in the hopes of beating record holder Guo Chuan, which stands at 137 days, 20 hours, one minute and 57 seconds.

But following a number of equipment failures, Alex has called it quits on his record attempt, after making it just past the halfway point.

According to Alex, the final straw was the mainsail system breaking, meaning the sail could not be fully raised.

He had sailed 13,910 miles, and at one stage was more than a day and a half ahead of the current record.

The veteran sailor is now in the Great Australian Bight, heading for a port in Adelaide.

He says the decision to retire from the record attempt is ‘disheartening’ but also his only option.

He said: ‘I can no longer hoist the mainsail all the way up without it jamming  –  the bigger issue with this is getting it back down again, which is very important when the wind increases.

‘I have come to the very disheartening conclusion that the only option is to head for a port and try and sort it out – but this means giving up on the record.

‘It is with great regret, and a deep feeling that I am letting you all down, that I am going to have to retire from the record and head to port in Australia.’

Alex had been sailing on the crowdfunded vessel, Pixel Flyer.