Juan Manuel Ballesteros braved a succession of perils as he sailed solo across the Atlantic Ocean after coronavirus flight restrictions had left him stranded in Portugal.
Ballesteros had planned to be with his elderly parents in Argentina for his father’s 90th birthday.
But before he was able to fly from Portugal, international flights were canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Undeterred, the experienced mariner took matters in his own hands and decided to take a long way home – with a more than 10,000km trip across the Atlantic Ocean.
Worried also that naval travel could be restricted, Ballestero hastily departed the Portuguese island of Porto Santo after taking just a couple of days to equip himself aboard his 10-meter solo sailing boat.
Stocked with rice, fruit, tuna, and wine – but having forgotten to pack medicine – he set sail in mid-March with the goal of arriving in Mar del Plata 75 days later.
There was a sign of things to come when he was refused entry at Cape Verde, where he had hoped to replenish supplies.
A huge setback followed when he ran out of fuel after crossing the equator, forcing him to operate on wind power. To add insult to injury, Ballestero ran out of wine on day 38.