A decade ago the young skipper of this classic 10-metre yacht, which is now parked next to Brisbane's South Bank Cycleway, set out alone to sail from Brisbane to Sydney, a voyage that ended almost immediately – blundering into a bulk carrier whilst napping below wasn't a good idea.
Patched up and rerigged, the yacht made it to Sydney. An heroic achievement for its teenage skipper.
After a short revictualling stop, Pink Lady put to sea again, this time keeping away from the coastal shipping routes. Out into the Pacific… past New Zealand, past Fiji and into the tropical waters of the South Pacific. On and on. Across the Equator and around one of those tiny islands almost no-one has heard of. Ever eastwards, but now heading back south through the tropics and into the oceanic pole of inaccessibility – the most utterly remote place on Earth and accepted 'safe place' to bring down decommissioned spacecraft.
Months after the departure from Australia, the teenager's parents flew to Chile and chartered a small aircraft to circle above the yacht as it rounded Cape Horn. And then it was gone.
In May 2010, Pink Lady sailed back through Sydney Heads. The unassisted and nonstop solo voyage was over… and sixteen-year-old Jessica Watson had some decidedly overdue schoolwork to attend to.
it has been a good talking point. it was hard to build as the abs glue is black and dries fast so I had to be careful. the decorations are glued together with a silicone adhesive that is removable. not sure what I will put on after Christmas. I just had like and Darth Vader in a light saber fight.