Round Australia attempt


Aussie multihull guru Paul Larsen reports on his imminent voyage to break the 43 day non-stop record
It's currently 5 am and I'm sitting in Hobart. In thirty hours or so I'll be heading out on a 56 foot Crowther designed cat called Raw Nerve on an attempt at the around Australia record. This is currently held by Kanga Birtles on Magna Data which has since been transformed into Grundig Xena. He did it a few years ago in 43 days. Sir Peter Blake did it a while ago in 34 I believe on the Steinlager 1 trimaran two handed with Mike Quilter but that was a combined race time as they had stops. Although that doesn't count it is still a time we would like to beat. I joined Martin Riley, the owner, and his crew in Western Port bay for the trip over to Tassie which went smoothly. Although it's the biggest racing multi in Oz at the moment it is still just over half the length of Maiden II. It's a truly interesting design with some concessions in the pod layout for cruising comfort. Once again I find myself on a catamaran with a pod. With four pipecots up forward in the pod I find myself quite often reminded of Team Philips. The boat is the full carbon/nomex pre-preg jobby and apparently tips the scales somewhere just over five tons. The mast is new and has had three meters added to bring it up to 87 feet. The boat seems to power up nice and early. The course around Oz is going to be pretty challenging at around 6,500 miles or so. I am looking forward to it as it will be a nice change from the Atlantic. The West Australian coast could provide us with the hardest bash but the ride once we come around the bottom and head back for the bottom

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