Offshore
 

Rambler 88 claims Fastnet monohull line honours

American George David's Rambler 88 crossed the finish line off Plymouth breakwater at 22:14:21 hrs Tuesday, to claim Rolex Fastnet Race monohull line honours.

George David's Rambler 88 - Click image for a larger image

The silver maxi crossed the finish line in a time of 2 days 9 hours 34 minutes and 21 seconds.

But it was considerably outside of the monohull race record of 1 day 18 hours and 39 minutes, set in 2011 by the Ian Walker-skippered VO70, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing.

For a lengthy period this morning Rambler 88 appeared set to achieve 'the double' ie win both line honours and overall on handicap.

However she has since been displaced from the top spot overall under IRC by the 115ft giant, Nikata and Ron O'Hanley's Cookson 50 Privateer.

George David's Rambler 88 crew - Click image for a larger image

As usual Rambler 88 was bristling with America's Cup and Volvo Ocean Race winners, including many former Team New Zealand and Alinghi crew.

A new recruit this time was former Emirates Team New Zealand helmsman Dean Barker, who sailed as watch leader. Although best known for his inshore racing, this is Barker's third Rolex Fastnet Race having previously competed on a Mumm 36 and aboard Hasso Plattner's maxi Morning Glory in 2001.

In 2011, the Rolex Fastnet Race nearly claimed David's life when the keel broke off his 100ft maxi, causing the boat to capsize shortly after rounding the Fastnet rock.

David and four others were washed away from their boat and it was only thanks to a near miraculous set of circumstances that they were rescued shortly before dusk.

Passing the same area this time David said they had touched base with the Irish rescue services who had saved them six years ago.

For David the Rolex Fastnet Race remains a favourite. "We have done four since 2007, and that qualifies it as a favourite race [of ours] but next time would you please make it warmer!"

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James Boyd
9 August 2017 7:00 GMT


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