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Posts Tagged ‘phaedo’

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Offshore obsessive and solo Figarist Henry Bomby turned a little help into a berth delivering the MOD-70 Phaedo (ex-Foncia) from the Canaries to Antigua, and he wrote one of his customarily good reports on the trip.  Follow Henry over here.

Sitting here in Antigua airport waiting for my flight back to London, life is good having just blasted across the Atlantic in just under 9 and a half days on board the new Phaedo3 MOD 70, one of the fastest sailing boats in the world.

Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 8.23.13 AMI originally joined the team just for the day to help take their race sails over to Portsmouth for painting. When I got back to France however my name was next to a bunch of jobs on the job list! I agreed to help out for the week as I heard talk they were going sailing on the Friday, and I was hoping I could tag along to grind for the afternoon if I was still around!

Tag along I managed to do and the next day I was asked if I fancied joining them for the trip across the Atlantic. I was super excited but hesitant, it would mean missing a weeks training in the Figaro and also (and much more importantly of course) mean missing a long planned Valentines weekend away with my girlfriend.. Fortunately coaches and Soph agreed it was a fantastic opportunity, and so it was sorted!

Arriving in Antigua
Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 8.23.07 AMWe were to be five on board. Skipper Mr Brian ‘easy cool, cool easy’ Thompson, the most laid back man on the planet, Sam Goodchild fellow Figarist currently enjoying a side project while on standby with Mapfre. Romain Attanasio, another Figarist (and Volvo ‘WAG’!), and Warren Fitzgerald (the boat captain fresh off the Hydroptère project) and me. We would be two watches, the roast beefs and the frogs, with Brian floating in between.

The first night we got straight into it and ripped across the Bay of Biscay at over 22kts. Rounding Cape Finistere within 15 hours. The boat as I said, is pretty remarkable…Shortly after leaving the sun went down, and we were straight into the watch system, Sam and I alone on deck of this 70ft machine which quite frankly scared the crap out of us in 25kts of breeze! We joked that Brian clearly had way more confidence in us than we had in ourselves as two young Figaro guys tore across Biscay in the pitch black. I broke my own personal speed record during our first watch, 30.7kts, with two reefs in the main and the J2 up, certainly ‘not pushing’ hard in anyway. Apparently?! The whole watch all I could think of was Brian’s last words before he went down for a nap ‘escape is down, escape is down, escape is down..’. On multihull a broach is a capsize, and you always need to know where your escape route is, 125 TWA is down , 95 TWA is up, as a very general rule. Anywhere in between is just terrifying!

Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 8.23.22 AMAfter two days motoring South, we passed Spain and Portugal and were soon into the trades, 16-23kts and downwind VMG sailing all the way to Antigua. This thing punches out 500nm days like it’s nothing. At the beginning Brian was telling me how on Bank Populaire V during their Jules Verne record attempt, 30kts by the end felt slow, and how in a weeks time, 20kts would feel pedestrian to me too. I couldn’t believe him, but it was true. You do get used to the incredible pace these machines chuck out, and it’s hugely addictive; you just want more and more.

It’s worth noting that the MOD70 is probably the 7th ‘ish’ fastest boat in the world, and it would absolutely eat up the latest high-tech new 100ft monohull on any angle of sail and in any wind speed.  It struck me massively on this trip: why aren’t trimarans more common, especially for offshore racing? I for one, am completely sold on them! Tthey are faster, and definitely more dangerous which suits many offshore events which label themselves ‘extreme’, meaning they really do need the very best sailors in the world to sail them. They are also dryer, comfier and have the potential for foiling which is definitely the way professional sailing at least, is going. In fact Gitana already has t-foil rudders fitted to their MOD 70 and is currently in the shed to develop full flight for this season.

Maybe now with the Americas Cup in multihulls, the tide is turning, and by the time I am 40 years old, I fully expect the boat taking on the Jules Verne record to be a fully foiling machine, so learning to sail these machines at any possibility is vital experience. I am unbelievably thankful to Brian and the guys for allowing me to jump on board with them. My eyes have officially been opened and dreams now become even bigger! Exciting times ahead in sailing that’s for sure.

Aerial photo by Team Phaedo/Rachel & Richard

 

March 3rd, 2015 by admin

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To no one’s surprise, Lloyd Thornburg’s Phaedo^3 absolutely obliterated the Caribbean 600 race record with a 33h35m30s elapsed time, beating the previous time set by an ORMA 60 by 6 and a half hours – some 15 percent.  Brian Thompson, Michel Desjoyeaux, and Lloyd did all the driving, and when we spoke to him a few minutes ago, he said he owed “a huge debt of gratitude to Michel for his amazing help – without him, we’d never have been able to turn this project around so quickly.”  Thornburg only purchased the MOD-70 in January, and is seriously excited to bring his new weapon to the Heineken before taking it North for the NY-UK Transatlantic Race and the Fastnet.

The rest of the fleet is struggling through light air, and turbo Volvo 70 Maserati never got away from Bella Mente before losing their canting mechanism and withdrawing; track the fleet here, and check the thread for pics and video.

Team Phaedo/Ocean Images photo.

 

February 24th, 2015 by admin

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Paradox and Phaedo^3 are currently oblitering the existing Caribbean 600 race record while both Rambler 88 and Bella Mente are ahead of the monohull record; it’ll be over almost before it started so track ’em all here and have a look at the people involved in the video above.  Ask or talk about this race over here.

UPDATE: Phaedo Start video here.

 

February 23rd, 2015 by admin

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The Michel Desjoyeaux-led MOD 70 crew of Lloyd Thornburg’s Phaedo^3 was loosely aware of the Farr 115 Sojana’s long-standing 4h37m43s ’round Antigua record when they went out for their first practice sail today; they put the pedal down on the trimaran and shattered it to pieces.  Unofficially, the new record is 2h44m15s, and the top speed the crew remembers seeing is somewhere around 35 knots…unofficially.

Big thanks to Team Phaedo/Ocean Images for the beautiful aerial shots; here’s another one of her coming right at ya!

February 21st, 2015 by admin

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There’s a perfect confluence this year of a strong economy, vibrant offshore racing scene, and serious multihull acceptance in 2016, and for those reasons, we’re calling it The Year Of Broken Records.  Thanks to ubiquitous maxi-multihulls, MOD70s, GC32s, AC45s and the new Ultim tris, nearly every inshore and ocean racing record could fall this year, which means plenty of masts and dreams will fail, too.

First up? Team Phaedo owner Lloyd Thornburg has finally recovered from his dismasting during the last Transpac, and with a massive refit and huge new rig, he’ll be assaulting the West Coast in 2016 with the now-fire engine red Gunboat 66.  But Thornburg’s got a nice combo of no fear and piles of time and money, and he just ‘scrounged together’ a MOD-70 (ex-Foncia) and shipped it across the ocean, recruiting some of the world’s top multihull and ocean racers for next week’s Caribbean 600.  With RTW record-holder Brian Thompson, double Vendee Globe winner Mich Desj, and a crew full of talent, there’s almost no conceivable way Phaedo can’t shatter the existing race record of 40 hours 11 mins 5 secs set by old-school ORMA 60 Region Guadeloupe all the way back in 2009.

With the new Rambler 88 and Turbo VO70 Maserati entered in the monohull class, there’s even a chance that the 40h20m monohull record set by David’s Rambler 100 (ex-Speedboat) can fall, but we’re expecting the first real assault on the monohull world to come from Kristy and the boys this spring.

Title shout out to a classic movie that fits…

 

February 19th, 2015 by admin

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