Smashes 10-year-old monohull mark by more than a day

British solo sailor Alex Thomson has smashed the single-handed monohull transatlantic record by more than 24 hours.

The 38-year-old crossed the finish line, at Lizard Point, off Falmouth in Cornwall, at 17:17GMT (18:17 BST) setting the new time of 8 days 22 hours 8 minutes.

The previous record of 10 days, 55 minutes and 19 seconds was set by Swiss sailor Bernhard Stamm 10 years ago.

“It has been a long few days,” said Alex. “The first half from New York was great with weather conditions in our favour, but things started to slow down the closer I got. But the wind has held out this morning and it’s so fantastic to have broken this record.”

Alex set sail from New York on July 17, aiming to cover the 2,800 nautical miles before the London Olympic opening ceremony, taking place on Friday evening.

“When I set off I had no idea if I was going to be able to do it. And it has been hard. Lack of sleep, broken instruments on the boat and constant exposure to the elements has really taken it out of me. But it’s such a good feeling to have beaten it by such a great margin,” said Alex.

He will now compete his yacht, the 60ft monohull HUGO BOSS, in the Vendee Globe, which starts in November.