As Leopard retires from Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race, Sidney Gavignet looks set to break solo record

NEWSFLASH 17:52 23.08.10

ICAP Leopard has contacted the RORC racing office to announce that they are retiring from the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race.

The crew are safe and well and are making a course for Southampton. At the present moment in time, the reason for their retirement is unknown.

“Sadly we have had to retire off Beachy Head! So heading back to Southampton, ETA tomorrow (Tuesday). Mike Slade/ICAP Leopard”

More news later.

Meanwhile, as the RORC fleet braces itself for a long windy night, Sidney Gavignet onboard the A100 trimaran Oman Air Majan is currently in the final stages of his attempt to break the single handed Round Britain and Ireland record. Current forecasts predict Oman Air Majan to finish tomorrow between 0800 – 1100 GMT off Lizard Point, Cornwall. The current record, set in 2006, by Thomas Coville (FRA) onboard his trimaran Sodebo stands at 6 days 6 hours 40 minutes and 31 seconds. If the record pace continues Oman Air Majan will break the record by over 24 hours.

The pace onboard remains incredibly fast as Sidney heads south along the west coast of Ireland. At 1630 GMT today Oman Air Majan was just 200 miles from the southern tip of Ireland and is currently looking on track to break the existing record with the finish line less than a day away.

Update from onboard:
“Last night was very, very long, one of the longest I have had so far. The conditions were incredibly variable and shifty, and as a result I had endless sail changes all night in order to keep us on track and not lose too much time. I felt exhausted this morning. Conditions were full on over the last 24 hours, we’ve had big waves, big winds and the temperature outside has dropped. But all is well onboard and we did a consistent 29 knots of boat speed for much of the night. I reefed the sail for a little bit this morning in order to get a small bit of rest, maybe only 30 minutes but it helps, a lot! I am so happy with Oman Air Majan, she sails beautifully and I have every confidence in her, many thanks again to the shore team you’ve done an perfect job!”
Watch the latest video of Sidney and Oman Air Majan off the west coast of Ireland

Existing record around Britain and Ireland, Non stop singlehanded   
Distance miles: 1787   
Set: August 2006   
Boat: Sodebo – 60 foot Trimaran
Record time: 6 days 6 hours 40 miniutes 31 seconds  
Average speed: 11.86 knots

Reference marks of the West-east course chosen by OMAN AIR MAJAN
Total Distance: 1.785 miles
Departure Cape Lizard (49° 57,5N-5° 12 W) – Dover: 260 miles
Dover – North Sheltand /Muckle Flugga (60°52N-0°53W): 600 miles
North the Shetland – Flannan Isles/Northern Scotland: 300 miles
North Scotland – Fastnet (51°23N-9°36W): 420 miles
Fastnet – Scillies/Bishop Rock’n’roll (49°52N-6°27W): 160 miles
Scillies – Cape Lizard: 45 miles

Length: 32 meters (105 feet)
Width: 16.50 meters (54 feet)
Largest Sail: 550 m ²
Designers: Nigel Irens – Benoit Cabaret
Built: Boatspeed, Australia (following the example B& Q/Musandam)
Assembled: Salalah, Oman

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