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Aussie grandfather becomes oldest person to sail around the world

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

A Queensland grandfather has become the oldest person to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around the world after spending nearly an entire year at sea.

A Queensland grandfather has become the oldest person to sail solo, non-stop and unassisted around the world after spending nearly an entire year at sea.

Bill Hatfield, 81, sailed back into the Gold Coast harbour today and into the record books after spending 295 days navigating his solo voyage.

"Oh, I'm very pleased to be back - I can tell you that. Nice to be on land again," Mr Hatfield told 9News.

He has already made three trips around the world but this is his first without stopping.

The latest journey was made all the more remarkable by the fact he sailed westward- meaning he faced far more prevailing winds and currents than if he'd taken the easier route and sailed east.

Bill Hatfield chats with the media after stepping back onto dry land.

"I'm so relieved that he's back safe and sound," Mr Hatfield's daughter Katherine Lembros said.

Mr Hatfield will now spend some time with his family but his sailing days may not be over just yet. After all, records are made to be broken. "I haven't made any - oh, of course I've made plans," he joked with reporters.

Asked whether she'd let her father travel around the world again, Ms Lembros didn't hesitate.

"Of course, absolutely," she said.

Mr Hatfield's new record-breaking trip surpassed the previous record set by English woman Jean Socrates who was 77 when she completed her circumnavigation in September last year.

Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/australian-grandfather-becomes-oldest-person-to-sail-around-the-world-queensland-news/1e990657-5ea3-44b5-8e24-7693501203f7

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