Sailrocket, the 30ft carbonfibre flyer in which Paul Larsen hopes to break the world speed sailing record is on schedule for a Southampton Boat Show launch

Sailrocket, the 30ft carbonfibre, Malcolm Barnsley-designed flying machine in which Paul Larsen hopes to break the world speed sailing record is currently in build at the NEG-MICON yard in Woolston, Southampton.

Since we last reported on the Sailrocket project, the building schedule has been progressing well and looks set to be well ahead of its target finish time of the Southampton Boat Show in September. That was however, up until lunchtime today when news from Larsen highlighted a slight problem with the moulding. Larsen commented: “It’s been one of those days. I’m standing here looking at the moulds as they’ve come out the oven and they’re covered in airbubbles.” While this is a really annoying thing to have happened at this stage in proceedings Larsen reckons it won’t be too much of a problem and will be sorted fairly easily, although it could take a week to do so.

Looking ahead to the rig set up, Larsen says they’ve decided to push ahead with a conventional soft sail rather than the solid wing sail option. Larsen added: “Yes, we’re going for a soft sail for our initial attempts as we feel that once optimised, it is more than capable of beating the existing record (remember that a sailboard is only a fraction over a knot off the pace) and that it is a far easier set up to handle for all practical purposes.”