Why would you join the ARC for an easy down wind sail back to OZ? Best you check out the visa requirements for the USA. Several of my ozzie friends have tried to do what you want to do, and have had to leave because the visa ran out before the boat was properly prepared and had HUGE problems after getting under way.
It will take longer then you think to prepare, cost more then you think to outfit and cost more to cruise back to oz then you think.
Good luck anyway..
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"Your dreams minus your doubts equals your net worth"
Life is a short journey, filled with emptiness and pain. Get all the sailing and booty you can.