Dame Ellen must have breathed a big sigh of relief when the Sultanate of Oman bought her 75 foot trimaran last month. That’s the former B&O/Castorama – the one that took her tiny self around the world in the fastest time ever for a solo sailor.
Francis Joyon made the big tri obsolete with his crushing of Ellen’s record, but Oman has some plans for it, though no one seems to know what they are. We’ve gotta admit that the boat looks a lot prettier in Omani livery than it did with the schizophrenic Anglo-French sponsor scheme, but we’re somewhat mystified at what it’s going to be doing there. Maybe we’ll see a crop of new and mostly meaningless Middle Eastern records set in the vein of some of the recent and random Asian records that no one’s been paying attention to.
Now en route to Oman, the new “Musandem” is officially part of a wider project to reignite Oman’s maritime heritage and to help promote the Sultanate as a world-class sailing destination. Maybe it could be just that – but with temperatures that hover between 85 and 105 degrees (30-45 degrees C) between May and November, we’ll pass, thanks. Photo courtesy of Mark Lloyd Images. More photos here.