Olivier de Kersauson and team aboard the giant ocean racing warrior Geronimo have broken the around Australia speed record
Olivier de Kersauson and team aboard the giant ocean racing warrior Geronimo have broken the around Australia speed record. Geronimo crossed the finish line off Sydney Opera House yesterday setting a new record of 17 days, 13 hours, 32 minutes, 39 seconds.
A jubilant Olivier de Kersauson and Geronimo’s men were greeted by a fantastic welcoming flotilla and the celebrations continued dockside at the Foxtel wharf after travelling the last five miles down the harbour under the cover of darkness.
The last 24 hours of the journey have been testing with the boat crossing Bass Strait, known to be a difficult area of water to cross, in an eight knot south south-east breeze. After reaching Gabo Island the breeze increased in strength which allowed the Capgemini and Schneider Electric trimaran to increase speed as she travelled up the south coast of New South Wales overnight.
But the last stretch hasn’t been all plain sailing. Earlier in the day the boat sailed into the path of weather cell that had 70 knot breezes along with a mini tornado which picked up the boat and drove them backwards at 20 knots. During this the boat sustained damage to the steering causing the boat to drift towards land at 10 knots. The crew quickly repaired the damage to the steering system after taking the sails down and Geronimo continued on her way to Sydney.
After stepping ashore De Kersauson commented: “This has been a wonderful trip but very challenging. So beautiful but so brutal at the same time. We are used to sailing in this area in the summer, this is the first time in the winter. I have been amazed at how well the Australian crew adapted to the boat and the French team who have known each other for years.”
The official prize presentation of the sydneyaustralia.com trophy for The Challenge will take place tomorrow (Monday 11 July) at 1030 at Wharf 7, Pyrmont Sydney.