Chinese sailor Guo Chuan missing while trying to break World Record


Beijing, Oct 27 : Chinese sailor Guo Chuan has gone missing while trying to break the record for crossing the Pacific alone, authorities said on Thursday.

Guo was last heard just after Tuesday afternoon when his boat, the Qingdao China, sailed 900 nautical miles off the west of Hawaii, Xinhua news agency reported.

All attempts to contact the 51-year-old sailor has failed, the authorities added.

The US Coast Guard was now searching waters off Hawaii, where his boat was spotted without him onboard ith its main sail snapped off and in the water.

Guo left San Francisco on October 18 with the aim of reaching Shanghai within 20 days.

He was also the first Chinese person to sail around the world alone when he completed his trans-navigation of the globe in a 12m yacht in 2013.

Guo, aiming to set a new solo non-stop trans-Pacific world record from San Francisco to Shanghai, piloted his trimaran, the “Qingdao China”, west across the start line under San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge. His solo sailing is about 7,000 nautical miles in length and normally expected to be completed within 20 days.

The current trans-Pacific speed record is 21 days, set by crews on board the Italian Maserati.

Guo, who has set a world record for a 138-day solo non-stop circumnavigation, told a Xinhua reporter in an earlier interview that the greatest fear as a sailor was to fall in the water.

“I fear being separated from the ship when I am sailing solo,” he said.

Guo recalled a brush with death in a 2011 trans-Atlantic race, saying he had survived a fall by grabbing a cable. “I was waist deep in the water. If hadn’t grabbed the rope, I would had been thrown in the water. In that scenario, I would never catch up with the ship. My chance of survival would be none.”