Technical Issue to Halt Record Attempt
Published on December 29th, 2016
(December 29, 2016) – Sardinian solo sailor Gaetano Mura on his Class40Italia is determined not to abandon his round-the-world record attempt from Gibraltar to Gibraltar. Yet, he is currently having several technical issues hindering the boat’s progress, some that cannot be dealt with on board.
The problems could only be solved by specialists who could make some of the electronics systems on board work again,namely the satellite communication system. The damage, observed some days ago, does not enable Gaetano to get accurate weather forecast gribs: a very serious obstacle to the record attempt as it makes it impossible for Gaetano to set the ideal course and also for safety reasons, because it is very hard to position the boat in the best spot to avoid the tough low-pressure systems at the latitudes Italia is sailing.
Moreover, the autopilot is also not working properly, which makes sailing single-handedly simply impossible.
One of the main challenges of these kind of attempts is to complete the route without encountering physical or technical issues. Suffice to say that in the Vendée Globe, the world-famous single handed race around the planet, no less than 10 skippers out of 29 starters had to abandon already.
For Gaetano Mura, getting ashore and receive outside assistance would automatically imply alt racing for the non-stop, unassisted round the world record attempt, as defined by the rules of the WSSRC (World Sailing Speed Record Committee).
The record is undoubtedly one but not the only goal for Gaetano Mura, his stakeholders and sponsors. As a matter of fact, Gaetano’s circumnavigation is a test-bench for more similar challenges after the 2009 Mini Transat and the 2013 Transat Jaquest Vabre, two of the tougher ocean races. Gaetano is not new to the hardship of offshore sailing. Besides, Gaetano has already spent 61 days at sea, totally alone, sleeping for very short naps of no more than 20 minutes each couple of hours, in extreme weather conditions and being put to exceptional psychophysical test.
More details on the situation and the approach to Australia will come over the coming days. Italia should arrive in Fremantle on the morning of December 31st, local time. The Australian town, is one of the world’s sailing capitals (where an America’s Cup edition was held in 1987, with two Italian challengers: Azzurra, and another boat called Italia, same as Gaetano’s boat) and where Italian skipper will be soon welcome and assisted.
Gaetano Mura’s route can be followed via the tracking on his official website: http://www.gaetanomurarecord.com/la-rotta/
Source: Carla Anselmi
Editor’s note: We have repeatedly asked Carla for details on whether Gaetano is on record pace but thus far have not received a reply.
Background: Italian solo sailor Gaetano Mura on board his Class40 Italia begun on October 27 (at 05:20 CEST) an attempt to beat China’s Guo Chuan singlehanded around the world record (40ft Division) of 137d 20h 01m 57s set in April 2013. Mura’s course is from Gibraltar to Gibraltar, with the starting line positioned south of the Trinity Lighthouse, on the famous Europa Point marking the extremity of the Rock of Gibraltar.