No, we have not tried that maneuver but it sounds like it would work. We are doing these POB drills for sailing classes so we have to follow The Book. Which is fine and useful for a variety of reasons but not so much for a couple sailing and having a POB.
The Figure Eight POB maneuver works, and works well, if you have three, or better yet, four people on board. From a class or training perspective, it is an excellent cap stone exercise because it uses much of what one has been taught in class. But it leaves much to be desired as far as we are concerned with a two person crew.
To me, the key thing is not not loose sight of the POB. Everything else is less important. What we have discussed is to just turn the boat into the wind, blow the sheets, check to make sure there is nothing in the water to fowl the engine or rudder, start the engine and get to the POB.
We have done the POB drills under sail many, many, many times. It works but it takes time and crew to do it. We just don't see how you do it with one person on the boat. The risk of loosing sight of the POB is too great.
The other problem with doing this under sail, is at some point, you get close to the POB, the person at the helm has to perfectly judge the speed and let go the main sheet. The jib got released earlier in the approach. If you don't get it right the boat shoots past the POB, or worse, stops short. Now the person at the helm has to figure out how to get back to the POB. If this is in cold water, one is burning precious time.
This would be much easier and faster under power and even better if the POB had a PLB.