Orange II set out on her quest for the Jules Verne Trophy at 0901 (French time) this morning.
It was precisely 0901 and 43 seconds when the official time records, the World Speed Sailing Record Council (WSSRC) recorded the start of Orange II on her attempt to sail crewed non-stop round the world.
The maxi catamaran crossed the imaginary start line between the Creac'h lighthouse on the French Island of Ushant and Lizard Point on the south-westerly tip of England in beautiful sunshine and choppy seas. Sailing with one reef in her mainsail and her staysail up, Bruno PEYRON was ath the helm of his Orange II, at the start of a two-month voyage with the obligation to be back by 16 hours, 31 minutes and 7 seconds on 30 April 2004 if he is to break the current world record which he set two years ago.
In 2002, Orange I made the trip round the world in 64 days, 8 hours, 37 minutes and 24 seconds. A little earlier, Olivier DE KERSAUSON (FRA) had also set off on Geronimo after also suffering the need for a re-start having had repairs to sails.