New Around Jamestown Record
Published on October 20th, 2021
A new outright record was set October 19 for the Around Jamestown Record by Rob Spets on his Foiling Kiteboard Skellinger, completing the attempt around Conanicut Island in Rhode Island with an elapsed time of 50 minutes and 48 seconds. This 2021 effort bests the previous record held since 2020 by Jason Carroll’s MOD70 Argo by 1 minute and 14 seconds.
Rob chose to sail the 18nm course in lower Narragansett Bay north from the start off Fort Adams at 12:17:48 ET. Spets departed in an 18-knot WSW breeze at the end of an ebbing tide. This was Rob’s first official attempt to set the Around Jamestown Record.
“If I was going to sum it up, it was survival mode for about 60% of the run,” said Spets. “I was super over-powered in the beginning, if I had a smaller kite would have flown it. I played it conservatively up the east passage and that was definitely the hardest part trying to hammer upwind and trying to get around the north end when it was nuking.
“I had a game plan going into the attempt, it’s something I thought about and looked at for years and I did a couple of practice runs for fun on old equipment. It was really amazing to do it for real and actually get the record in my first record try; I’m kind of blown away.
“I had my speed on my watch and I know I needed 22 knots to beat Argo and at the north end I was averaging 19, by the bridge I was averaging 21.5 and I thought ‘okay, this is maybe doable’ and at Beavertail I was at 22 and change, so I thought alright, this last bit is downwind so I can light it up.
“The funny thing is there is room for improvement, I hit a school of fish just past the Jamestown bridge and that was my biggest wipeout. There were also a couple of touchdowns so I know there are local guys who could absolutely take it.”
About Around Jamestown Record
The Around Jamestown Record is a perpetual all out record for sailing the 18 nm course around Conanicut Island (also known as Jamestown) in lower Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. Similar to other outright speed records, contenders decide when to make their record attempt and also which direction they will sail around Jamestown. The record is open annually from Memorial Day until October 31 during the hours of daylight.
Five categories are recognized for annual divisional honors with the overall perpetual trophy going to the boat with the outright fastest time. The entry fee is $150.00 per attempt for any vessel 32’ and over, vessels under 32’ the fee is $70.00.
• Monohull 32’ & Above (2014): 71’ mini-maxi, Bella Mente, 01:19:35
• Monohull below 32’ (2013): Shaw 6.50, Manic, 02:00:29
• Multihull 32’ & Above (2020): MOD70, Argo, 00:52:02
• Multihull below 32’ (2014): F31, Bazinga!, 01:33:53
• Kiteboards & All Foiling Craft (2021): Foiling Kiteboard, Skellinger, 00:50:48
Source: Julianna Barbieri, Manuka Sports Event Management