East Cowes debut
This summer, the huge ‘Union Jack’ doors of the Columbine shed in East Cowes will part and true to the shed’s origins, one more and perhaps final,
amazing flying boat will emerge. The UK based team behind the Vestas
Sailrocket project are building a new boat to finish the job of setting the
outright world speed sailing record. The new craft will be an evolution of
the innovative concept upon which their original craft was based.
The new boat is being built in the VESTAS R&D facilities at East Cowes on
the Isle of Wight. It will incorporate many features to make it more
versatile and practical to sail at world record speeds in a wider range of
winds and sea states. The team will launch the new boat in East Cowes in
time for the British summer and hope to carry out testing in the UK over the following months. If initial trials go well, the team will endeavour to
bring the world record back to UK waters.
Pilot/project leader, Paul Larsen- “This represents a fantastic opportunity
to develop a real breakthrough concept. Our first interpretation of it did a brilliant job of demonstrating the potential. I’m very proud of what we have achieved but also very aware that we haven’t finished the job. I personally can’t live with that. The first boat did what it was supposed to do… but by the time it did, the record had moved on. As it stands we still need to go two knots faster to break the current world record. I still believe our first boat could break that record but I also know she is near her limits.
As a team we are now well positioned to design and build a much better,
safer and above all faster boat which is more suitable for the challenges to come. Vestas Sailrocket1 will be on public display in all her battle scarred glory at the upcoming RYA Volvo Dinghy Show, Alexandra palace, March 6-7th.
Achievements to date:
Emerged in 2008 as fastest sailing ‘boat’ in the world, Current B class
world record holder, Best 500 meter average 49.38 knots, Best peak speed
52.78 knots (60.75mph).
The current Outright world record sits at 51.36 knots (59.1 mph) and is held by the French ‘Hydroptere’ project.
The outright world speed sailing record is set by taking the average speed
of the craft between two points set 500 meters apart. All records are
ratified by the sports governing body, the WSSRC (World Speed Sailing Record Council).