Round Britain on a Class 40
How to attempt a world speed sailing record...and have a good chance of achieving it!
Monday, 23 August, sees the start of the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race. This is only the seventh time that RORC has organised a fully crewed race around the British Isles and the club has specifically adapted the course this year so that a number of world speed sailing records could potentially be broken. ICAP Leopard will certainly be eying out the course record and the outright monohull record, but among the 40 footers, the Class 40 entrants will be looking at beating the time of 11 days, 12 hours, 26 minutes and 48 seconds set by Michel Kleinjans in 2004. This time is recognised as an official offshore speed record for yachts of 40ft and under, by the World Speed Sailing Record Council.
At the moment there are only two Class 40 yachts entered in the race, but Phesheya-Racing is waiting in the wings. In June Phesheya-Racing completed the double-handed Shetland Round Britain and Ireland race in an elapsed time of 11 days, 1 hour, 18 minutes and 59 seconds, but although it was over a longer distance than the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race it could not be ratified as a world record as it included four compulsory stops along the way. Besides, three other Class 40s finished less than 26 minutes ahead of us. So, Class 40s are definitely the way forward if you are looking to break this world record, and what better way to do it than by joining the experienced crew aboard Phesheya-Racing? We are looking for one or two keen crew members who are able to share expenses, in order to be able to enter the race and have a crack at the record.
Phesheya-Racing is co-skippered by Phillippa Hutton-Squire and Nick Leggatt, both from South Africa. This will bring the number of countries represented in the race to 10, and we will be the only entry from the southern hemisphere. Phillippa and Nick have sailed Phesheya-Racing over 8,000 miles since April so have an intimate knowledge of the boat and course.
One of the records that is unlikely to be broken is the outright sailing speed record around Britain and Ireland set by the late Steve Fossett aboard Playstation, in a time of 4 days 16 hours 9 minutes and 36 seconds, but as Nick was among the crew on that passage he feels a special affinity for the course and the record!
Those wishing to join Philippa and Nick on the RORC's race around Britain can contact them through their website www.phesheya-racing.com