Paul Larsen's Vestas Sailrocket 2 has smashed the 500 metre record in Luderitz, Namibia. His best average speed was 59.38 knots.
The record, subject to World Speed Sailing Record Council (WSSRC) ratification, is a significant increase of Rob Douglas' record he set in 2010 on a kiteboard of 55.65 knots.
On Friday 16th November, Vestas Sailrocket 2 set a record time with an average of 59.23 knots on the 500 metre course.
On Sunday 18th , Vestas Sail Rocket 2 established a new one nautical mile record of 55.32 knots average, and during this run improved the 500 metre record to 59.38 knots.
For Larsen and his team the record has been ten years in the making and the celebrations can now begin.
Link to 500 Metre Records Since 1972
About Vestas Sailrocket 2
• The main fuselage and beam are angled at 20 degrees to the actual direction of travel. This is so it points directly into the direction of the 'apparent' wind at high speed to both reduce drag and increase stability.
• The entire boat including rigging has the equivalent aerodynamic drag of a 74 cm wide sphere.
• The boat should be capable of 3:1 boat speed to wind speed ratios.
• Adding a second 80 kg passenger reduces the peak speed by around 2.5 knots... about the same as sailing in 1 knot less wind.
• The back of the boat will lift onto the curve of the foil at around 25 knots. The leeward float will begin to fly clear of the water over 50 knots. Only the main foil, the rudder and the 'step' of the forward float will be in the water at high speed.
• If the main foil fails at high speed, the back of the boat will lift. The result will be that the wind will push down on the beam rather than lifting it like it did on the first boat. It must do this before the boat gets too nose down.
• At low speed, the boat will be predominantly steered by moving the beam and wing fore and aft by up to 3 meters. At low speed it is forward to help the boat turn away from the wind. As the boat accelerates the beam is moved aft until it is at 90 degrees to the fuselage.
• The curve of the main foil determines how high the boat rides.
• The three floats were all designed to have a long waterline with lots of volume at low speed, low drag at high speed as they rise onto their stepped hulls and as low an aerodynamic drag as possible as they will be flying at 20 degrees to the direction of the wind.
• The front float has a very strong floor to deal with the pounding it will get at high speed.