Grundig back on 24 hour record attempt

Sean Langman and his team are underway out into the Southern Ocean

Tuesday May 21st 2002, Author: Rob Kothe, Location: Australasia
Tonight Sean Langman's exciting modified Open 60 Grundig is bouncing and jumping into the Southern Ocean, in a wet and wild record attempt aiming to break the monohull 24 hour speed record of 484 miles recently set by illbruck in the Volvo Ocean Race.

Averaging over 21 knots in the 5 hours since she set sail Grundig is 120 miles out of Sydney as she aims south of New Zealand on her record attempt.

Grundig has not had a good ride yet into the Southern Ocean. Three attempts in the Hobart race have seen two aborted with hull delamination in 2001, a shredded mainsail in 2000 and back in 1999 she broke off one of her twin rudders and limped into Hobart.

But this is a different set of sailing conditions for the thoroughbred off the wind racer. With 20-25 knot winds across the deck, Grundig is now shy reaching south east into the night. Her speed is fine, if maintained it would see her smash illbruck's record by more than 20 miles.

But the problem is the wind angle, already a shift has put a dog leg the super skiffs track, which has reduced her achieved distance by five precious miles which has seen her slip minutely below the magic numbers. But her speed is building and conditions are improving.

Timing is critical, New Zealand/Amer Sport meteorologist Roger 'Clouds' Badham, has the Sydney 'pocket rocket' aiming for the top of the low pressure swirling towards New Zealand. It Grundig gets the angle right then she will slingshot to a record with strengthening winds.

With only six crew in a wild seaway, there is no one sitting at the radio providing a running commentary for us.

Crew Sean Langman and Joe de Cock are driving the boat, while Adrian Mills, Bruce Perry, Clinton Wade-Lehman and John Crawford are trying to keep her trimmed for max speed in the wildly shifting conditions.

Remember this boat sails in many races with a crew of 12-14, so right now there is a busy crew blasting south easterly into the southern wastes between New Zealand and Tasmania

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