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23 April 2004, 10:40 am
Time To Step Back From The Front Line
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© Henri Thibault

Steve Fossett

Two weeks after returning from his successful Round The World Sailing world record at the helm of his 125' maxi-catamaran Cheyenne, American skipper Steve FOSSETT announced that he has decided to pull back from front line international speed sailing.
After 11 years of spectacular record success, he has decided to focus on key 2004-2005 projects in aviation (altitude, speed and distance gliding plus the round the world solo airplane) as well as other new (as yet undisclosed) sporting projects on land and in the air. Cheyenne will be put up for sale.

"The round the world record has fulfilled my highest ambition in sailing," admitted Fossett on Tuesday "and this just seems like the right time to stop."

His focused and committed approach has made him the greatest record-setter in the history of speed sailing with over two-dozen total world and race records set. And 13 of the 22 current records listed as 'outright' in the World Sailing Speed Record Council (WSSRC) record book are held by Fossett - including the amazing new RTW at 58 days 9 hours on the 125' maxi-cat Cheyenne - and the 2001 New York - UK TransAtlantic rocket ride of 4 days 17 hours (aboard the same boat, then known as PlayStation).

"It has been an exciting - and very fulfilling - 11 years. In the past we've defended our records by re-taking 4 of them when broken: the 24 Hours (twice), Round Britain & Ireland, and Isle of Wight - but I don't want to make a program of that. My mind is on aviation projects right now. I should sell Cheyenne to someone who wants to do the Oryx Cup RTW Race - or maybe even try to break some of our records."

Steve Fossett's Sailing Records:

Record Time Date
Round the World 58d 9h 32m 45s Feb-April 2004
TransAtlantic 4d 17h 28m 6s(25.78 kts) 01/10/2001
Round Britain & Ireland 4d 16h 9m 36s 01/10/2002
TransAt-Discovery Route 9d 13h 30m 18s 01/02/2003
TransMed (Marseilles-Carthage) 18h 46m 48s 01/05/2002
Fastnet Course 35h 17m 14s 01/03/2002
Newport-Bermuda 1d 14h 35m 53s 01/01/2000
Isle of Wight 2h 33m 55s 01/11/2001
Round Ireland 44h 42m 20s 01/09/1993
Hawaii-Japan 13d 20h 9m July-Aug 1995
Pacific Ocean East to West 16d 17h 21m 01/08/1995
Miami-New York 2d 5h 54m 42s 01/05/2001
Plymouth-LaRochelle 16h 41m 40s 01/04/2002
Fossett Challenges
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