The OCC celebrates the tenacious 70-year-old's success

Here’s the pictures of record-breaking British sailor Jeanne Socrates reaching dry land after more than eight months alone at sea.

Ocean Cruising Club (OCC) representatives met Jeanne at Victoria, British Columbia and presented her with a special award to honour her completion of a solo non-stop circumnavigation at the age of 70.

Jeanne, who has been an OCC member since 1999, succeeded in completing the gruelling challenge aboard Nereida, her 38ft sailing vessel on Monday.

She has been circumnavigating since 2007, completing four trips around the globe, but the non-stop eluded her until now.

When Jeanne passed the Victoria Harbour entrance her voyage was officially recorded by the World Sailing Speed Record Council.

The voyage was completed without the use of the engine for propulsion.

Nereida left Victoria on October 22, 2012 and Jeanne has spent over 250 days at sea, with her ham radio being the main source of communication with the outside world.

The yacht is now moored in front of the Empress Hotel, courtesy of the Victoria Harbour Authority.

OCC Commodore John Franklin said: ‘Jeanne Socrates is one of our most accomplished sailing members in recent years.

‘She is now over 70 years of age and is engaged in her third solo non-stop attempt in six years.

‘This is the Victoria BC to Victoria BC circuit pioneered by our own Tony Gooch, who holds the solo non-stop record of 177 days for this circuit.

‘In fact, Tony, who is off sailing on his own adventures at the moment, has given Jeanne great encouragement and guidance in planning her attempt.’

History maker

Jeanne has broken many records. She is the oldest woman to circumnavigate solo, the oldest woman to circumnavigate solo via the Five Great Capes, and now, she is the oldest woman to circumnavigate solo non-stop.

OCC members Ian and Susan Grant were there at her arrival in Victoria to present her with an engraved plaque as an award of special recognition for her accomplishments.

Why did she do it?

Jeanne didn’t originally set out to circumnavigate. She only started sailing in 1990.

She and her husband George were spending a leisurely retirement cruising the Mediterranean and the Caribbean when George fell ill with cancer and passed away while on a cruise in the Caribbean.

Jeanne didn’t want to give up sailing but she had not been the skipper on board Nereida. When she heard about an OCC Rally in British Columbia, she decided to participate and recruited a crew member to assist.

However, when she was ready to depart Bonaire, he did not appear. So she took matters into her own hands and took off for Florida. After leaving, she received a message that her crew member was looking for her in Bonaire, and she replied that he should meet her at the next island.

The crew member joined her for the first part of her trip and helped her get accustomed to her new role, but she discovered that she really preferred to sail alone.

Jeanne spent the next few months learning how to fix things on the boat. As she progressed toward British Columbia, her confidence and competence grew until she reached where she is today – back in British Columbia where the adventures all began and at the receiving end of a special award from OCC to recognize that perseverance can lead to amazing achievements if the drive is there to succeed.

Visit Jeanne’s website at

The pictures show:

Jeanne Socrates, taking her first step on dry land and her happiness. Credit: Richard.J.Williams

The yacht Nereida. Credit: Ian Grant

The Ocean Cruising Club Award. Credit: Richard J Williams