The world's fastest ocean-going sailing vessel, PlayStation, will arrive in Southampton today, after failing to break the long-standing TransAtlantic Record.

Steve Fossett and his 10 man crew, sailing the 105 foot maxi-catamaran, PlayStation, are due to arrive in Ocean Village this afternoon after sailing across the Atlantic in an attempt to break the long-standing TransAtlantic Record.

On the 18 May, some 1500 nautical miles west of The Scilly Isles, Skipper Steve Fossett acknowledged that the average speed required over the following 3 days to break Serge Madec’s ten year old TransAtlantic record was probably too high. Nearly 4 days into the attempt, Fossett signalled in an e-mail to Mission Control, that the 6 day 13 hour 3 min 32 sec benchmark looked beyond the 105 ft (32m) maxi cat on this trip, even if wind conditions improved.

After leaving New York on the 14 May, the world’s fastest ocean-going sailing vessel (580.23 nautical miles in 24 Hours – March 1999), caught up with slow weather patterns which hindered their progress. Their target, the current TransAtlantic record, held by Frenchman Serge Madec (Jet Services V – 1990), slowly moved further from their grasp.

The original 1905 record of 12 days, set by the schooner Atlantic, stood for 75 years. Between 1980 and 1990 it was broken seven times. Since 1990 nearly 20 attempts have been made on this exceptional mark. Despite not breaking the existing record, Steve Fossett is not despondent, commenting on the last few days he said:

“It has been a very fast passage and an excellent opportunity for the crew to work through a wide variety of conditions. PlayStation’s first TransAtlantic attempt of the summer has been a very positive experience for the whole crew. .. we will be back for another shot as soon as possible. Avoiding the slow weather systems will be the key to breaking the TransAt record. This is just another reminder that the record set by Jet Services V a decade ago is still one of the hardest records to break.”

PlayStation will compete in ‘The Race’ which begins on December 31, 2000. This promises to be the most extraordinary fleet race in history – a non-stop no-rules race around the world for sailing vessels. PlayStation will be one of the main opponents to Pete Goss and Team Philips.