Mallorcan woman breaks transatlantic record

White sailing yacht

White sailing yacht. Credit: Shutterstock

Mallorcan sailor Aina Bauzà, from the Port of Andratx sailing club, has broken the speed record on her 30-day journey from Cadiz to the Bahamas.

Aboard the 21-foot Redó by Ànima Negra, the 29-year-old sailed 4,800 miles in 31 days, with top speeds of up to 18 kn.

Speed record

The World Sailing Speed Record Council (WSSRC) is set to certify this achievement, making Aina the first person to complete a solo crossing between Cadiz and San Salvador in a monohull, and the first woman ever to do so. She is also first person to achieve this in a 21-foot boat.
Aina intended to cover the almost 4,000 nautical miles between Cadiz and San Salvador in less than 21 days. However, bad weather delayed progress. “The weather didn’t allow me to take the shortest route, so I had to go down very far south to stay in the zone where the winds were favourable and ended up doing many more miles than expected,” she explained. In the end she sailed roughly 4,800 miles in 31 days, at speeds of up to 18 kn.

Unstable weather

The weather was unstable throughout the journey and conditions were frequently adverse. Aina experienced swells around the Canary Islands due to a low front. In the Atlantic, she had to travel further south than expected due to an anticyclone in the Azores. Mid-Atlantic, she was up against trade winds exceeding 25 knots and waves of up to four metres. The approach to the Caribbean was also a challenge, with four cold fronts, wind and intense rain.
As well as practical issues, Aina was up against considerable personal challenges. It was the first time she had been alone on board for so many days, and her first Atlantic crossing. She did not see any other human beings for more than 16 days, nor even any other boats until she got to the Caribbean. On a practical level, she also had no bedroom, bathroom or kitchen.

Aina Bauza is unstoppable: her next challenge is to sail around Europe.

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Annie christmas in the Bay of Palma
Written by

Annette Christmas

Annie Christmas loves language and communication. A long-time resident of Mallorca, she enjoys an outdoor life of cycling, horse riding and mountain walking, as well as the wealth of concerts and cultural events on the island. She also plays fiddle in a traditional Mallorcan dance troupe.