Newport-Bermuda records falls—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond
Last August, skipper George David's co-owned Rambler 100 made international headlines when her keel catastrophically failed, roughly a half hour after rounding Fastnet Rock in the 2011 edition of the fabled Fastnet Race, causing the boat to turn turtle in less than a minute. While all crewmembers were saved, the breakage not only put everyone in harm's way, but it also prevented the team— one of the world's best group of sailors—from besting the course record.
Flash forward a year and Mr. David is smiling, this time for a much better reason than a successful rescue—he now owns the Newport-Bermuda Race record, having set a new course standard of just 39 hours, 39 minutes, and 18 seconds (note: this record is still subject to ratification) over this past weekend in the 48th edition of the Newport-Bermuda Race. That's a reduction of fourteen hours from the late Roy Disney's 2002 record aboard Pyewacket.
'These were perfect conditions,' said a delighted David in Bermuda. 'The most exciting moment was when we hit 26 knots. I'm so pleased with our performance. We have reduced the record by twenty-five percent—not bad for a boat that's now 10 years old. This Rambler is the best boat I have ever owned!'
Racecourse conditions were ideal for fast passages for boats of all sizes, as a strong northeasterly kept things lively, especially for the faster, quicker boats that were able to take great advantage of the big pressure and 'interesting' Gulf Stream conditions.
Further astern, Joe Harris, skipper of the Class 40 GryphonSolo2 offers a great racecourse report. 'GryphonSolo2 are moving well and about 170 miles from Bermuda,' reported Harris. 'It got a little slow last night as the breeze softened from 20 knots to 10 knots and it felt like we were going very slow, but that was only because we had been going very fast.' Get the full Newport Bermuda report inside this issue, and stay tuned to the website for more news, as it officially unfurls.
Meanwhile, in Lorient, France, the sailors participating in the 2011/2012 Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) are dealing with the reckoning that comes after a burly, penultimate offshore leg, and the leaderboard upsets that it represented. Former race leader Telefinica suffered dual rudder breakages in the trying conditions that the fleet experienced after rounding São Miguel in the Azores, essentially pulling them from the running for the overall prize.
This, of course, was great news for Groupama 4, Puma Ocean Racing's Mar Mostro, and Emirates Team New Zealand's Camper, who have now occupied the number one, number two and number three positions, respectively. Telefionica skipper Iker Martinez and his men are currently occupying fourth place, but with some in-port racing and another offshore leg (from Lorient to Galway), there is still some runway left for leaderboard changes. Stay tuned for more news, as it becomes available.
melges 24 US Nationals - Melges 24 US National Championship International Melges 24 Class Association
Also, be sure to comb this issue for the latest happenings from the Sardinia Cup, the Melges 24 Nationals (which are taking place right here in Seattle) and Kiel Week, which runs through the 24th of the month. And finally, get the latest reports from the Clipper Around the World Yacht Race, and be sure to spend some time scrolling through the image gallery from the VOR's Lorient finish.
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