STOCKHOLM, Sweden – Ericsson 4 has broken the 24-hour speed record set by ABN-AMRO 2 in the last Volvo Ocean Race, three times in the past twelve hours.
At 0355GMT Ericsson 4 reached 565 nautical miles in the previous 24 hour period, breaking the existing record by two miles, but that figure increased at 0755 GMT to 589nm and by 1145h GMT this had further increased to 590.5nm. At the point of writing, no other boat in the fleet had broken this record, which is still awaiting ratification from the World Speed Racing Council.
“It has been fantastic to achieve the record. The wind has been perfect at about 30k and we have a good angle. However, the problem is the waves, especially in the middle of the night as there is no moon and it is very difficult to read the them, so the boat has been jumping about. If the sea state was better we could go faster,” commented an exhilarated Torben Grael this afternoon.
Juan Kouyoumdjian, the designer of both Ericsson 3 and Ericsson 4, also designer of the last record holder, ABN-AMRO 2: “I am very happy to receive this kind of satisfaction. As designers we provide the instrument that the crews have to play, but only that. This record belongs to the crew”.
For their part Ericsson 3 is the boat that gained most across the fleet over the past 24 hours. Overnight they passed both the Telefonica boats and at the time of writing are some 30nm ahead of Telefonica Blue.
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