Kiwi's second crack at record sail

22:21, Mar 12 2014
The 19.2-metre Kiwi Spirit is custom-designed for Stanley Paris' solo circumnavigation.

Kiwi sailor Stanley Paris is making another attempt to become the oldest and fastest person to sail around the world.

The 76-year-old, formerly of Dunedin and now based in America, attempted the 44,000-kilometre voyage in his custom-built 19.2-metre yacht, Kiwi Spirit, last year.

He aimed to break the existing record of 150 days from Bermuda and return, and to be the oldest to do it solo.

stanley paris
YACHT SELFIE: Stanley Paris on board the Kiwi Spirit.

But Paris was forced to abandon his dream of setting the records in January after he fell while repairing a sail destroyed by storms in the South Atlantic. 

Paris suffered suspected cracked ribs and injured his left arm, and the yacht was so badly damaged its designers urged him to stop for his own safety.

Now Paris has announced his plans to attempt the epic journey again, departing from his home in St Augustine, Florida in November.


In a blog post on his website, Paris said he had met with architects, builders, riggers and sail-makers to ensure his yacht was made stronger, along with its "now more experienced captain".

"The boat and I have now done a few miles - most of them solo - my weaknesses and those of the boat have been exposed," he wrote.

"If it’s true that you learn more from failure than success, and I support that statement, then we have learned a great deal."

He said he would be happy with a "low key" send-off come his departure in November: "However, on my successful return you can pull out as many stops as you wish."

Paris admitted this would be probably be his last chance.

"Should I fail a second time... know that there will not be a third try as there is a limit to my wife Catherine's tolerance for such things."

Fairfax Media