Musandam-Oman Sail set new Round Ireland Record

Published on May 6th, 2015

The six-man crew, skippered by Sidney Gavignet, and including Omani sailors Fahad Al Hasni, Yasser Al Rahbi and Sami Al Shukaili, key members of last year’s Round Britain and Ireland world record setting team, plus Spain’s Alex Pella and French multihull veteran Jean Baptiste Levailland, set a new Round Ireland, non-stop, crewed record in the MOD 70 Musandam-Oman Sail.

The team crossed the finish line beneath the Kish Lighthouse off Dublin Bay just before 1000 UTC (May 6) having started their record attempt at 1704 UTC on Monday, May 4.

They needed to be back by 1500 to take the record but their breakneck speeds down the west coast of Ireland, at one stage reaching 38 knots, meant they were finished well before that, some three hours and 50 minutes faster than the record of 44 hours 42 minutes held by Steve Fossett set in September 1993 aboard his 60ft trimaran Lakota. The record will remain unofficial until World Record Sailing Speed Council ratification.

Helmsman Fahad Al Hasni said this record attempt coming at the end of a European winter, had proved tough.

“It was both scary and exciting because we saw 40 knots of wind and massive waves that we reckoned were around six metres but the main challenge was the cold. It is still winter here and my hands were so cold I still can’t feel them but I’m really happy because there have been some very famous sailors who have made attempts on this record but we are the ones who now hold it. We have become a really good, tough team and it feels great to be part of it.”

Added Gavignet, “We had to be very careful in these conditions and had no choice but to slow down at times but to have achieved the record so early in our season is a great feeling. It had been a priority and now it is done.”

This was Musandam-Oman Sail’s second attempt on the Round Ireland record. Two years ago they set off from Dublin Bay with high hopes but were forced to abandon due to unsafe conditions.

“Attempting to break the Round Ireland record has been our goal for many years now and achieving the feat is a shining example of the hard work and dedication of our sailing squad,” said David Graham, CEO of Oman Sail. “Racing against yourself to set a time is the hardest test of discipline. With a 50% Omani crew, this record shows that the present and the future of sailing in Oman is on the right course.”

Source: Oman Sail
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