No one here knows you better than you know yourself and your crews. Based on what you wrote, it seems a logical approach. I would not have any problem to sail back to your home port in AU. The short comings that you have now can be corrected by the time you ready to set sail. I think having the skills in heavy weather sailing is good, but having a critical thinking skills, good physical shape and maturity will keep you alive.
Getting a good solid boat is the key. Then practice heavy weather sailing while in the US as much as you can. Go out in bad weather in 25 to 40 knots wind to see how the boat handles. Practice, practice and practice in a controlled environment and to push your limits and the boat to see how she handles. Simulating different breakdown scenarios , no head sail, no main, no steering and no engine and etc.
I found reading sailing story books (over and over again) and listening the old salts help me to prepare for my head. Knowing the sequence and how the event will proceed helps me to prepare or to alter the course of action. Learning the mistakes of others help me in a situation where my decision would be critical for our (me and crews) survival
Because you ask this question, I think when the time comes, you will know if you are ready. I know I will.