Known as Polar Preet, the army officer and physiotherapist embarked on her harrowing polar journey unsupported and unassisted.
The previous record for a woman was set by Anja Blacha skiing 858 miles (1,381 km) in 2020 but Capt Chandi smashed that with an impressive 868 miles (1,397 km).
Congratulations to Derby alumni and honorand @PreetChandi10 who has broken the record for the longest solo, unsupported, and unassisted polar expedition by any woman in history. 👏🎉
@DerbyUniAlumni @KensingtonRoyal @TeamArmyUK pic.twitter.com/e4B14Xk4MD
— University of Derby (@DerbyUni) January 20, 2023
Facing temperatures as cold as –50C (-58F), Capt Chandi began her journey from Hercules Inlet in November hoping to reach Reedy Glacier within 75 days. Although she did not finish her journey across the continent she travelled far enough to break the record.
Her previous training included polar expeditions in Greenland and Norway, and she said she spent months dragging tyres everywhere she went. Last year the University of Derby awarded her an honorary degree.
Speaking on her blog and referring to a previous adventure in January 2022, Polar Preet Breaking Boundaries, Capt Chandri wrote: “Three years ago, I did not know much about Antarctica and that is what inspired me to go there.
“After 40 days alone on the ice, I completed my 700 mile journey to the South Pole on 3 January 22. This was achieved while pulling a 90kg sled and battling through blizzardy whiteouts.
Who is Preet Chandri?
Capt Chandri was born in Derby in 1989 and had a passion for tennis and marathon running as a young girl.
After her studies she joined the Territorial Army and later the British Army at 27.
She moved from being a lance corporal to a lieutenant in the Royal Army Medical Corps and was promoted to captain on December 15, 2016.
Capt Chandri was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire in the 2022 Birthday Honours.
Big congrats to Preet Chandri on her polar expedition !! What a feat 👋👋👋
— Glo1 (@spouseg) January 20, 2023
First woman of colour to complete solo Antarctic expedition
Capt Chandri, who is of Indian heritage and the Sikh faith, hopes to inspire other woman to follow in her footsteps stating that “nothing is impossible”.
She previously had said: “A lot of the time, especially in my community, it’s those closest to us who sometimes hold us back, because we’re doing something that’s out of the norm or something that’s different.”
“I’ve always had this idea that I can achieve something great, something that allows me to be a role model. I want my 11-year-old niece to grow up without boundaries, knowing the possibilities of what you can achieve in life are endless.”