Sam Davies diary

Sam recounts her first sailing experience on board her new 110ft catamaran Maiden II
Although the press announced the Maiden II project just one month ago, I can safely say that this has been in the heads of eleven girls since the 18th March 1998, when Royal & SunAlliance was dismasted in the Southern Ocean during our attempt at breaking the non-stop record for sailing around the world and winning the coveted Jules Verne Trophy. As you may have read a few weeks ago, in February this year Tracy Edwards bought the maxi-cat Club Med and started the ball rolling again to finish what we set out to do in 1998. This latest-generation racing catamaran has been re-named Maiden II and a core team has been established in La Ciotat in the South of France to start sailing. I am part of that crew. I was on board Royal & SunAlliance too. Since winning The Race, Club Med underwent an extensive refit at Compositeworks in La Ciotat, to ready her for some more record-breaking sailing. When we arrived to take over the boat, she was up on the hard, looking bare, but looking in fine condition. The rig was also on the shore. We have spent the last two weeks going through every system on the boat and mast. We have tested the rigging, checked the electronics and removed logos everywhere - to prepare a big space for a lucky sponsor to benefit from! The launch date was finally set for last Monday (delayed slightly due to a Mistral!) Luckily, Compositeworks is based in a fantastic shipyard that has some of the largest cranes in the world. Even at 110ft long Maiden II was dwarfed by the crane that lifted her gently up, to enable us to slide the rudders in, and then place her into the water. The daggerboards were then craned in and after