Though some of the fleet have yet to finish, the Iate Clube Rio do Janeiro confirmed that American George DAVID's Rambler managed a hat trick in the 22nd Offshore Race Rolex Buenos Aires - Rio de Janeiro.
The 90-foot super-maxi has secured line honours, the overall handicap win and set a new race record for the course, taking 9 hours off the previous time.
The American boat was the first boat to finish the 1,123 nm race last Thursday, covering the course between the Argentinean capital of Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with a new race record in elapsed time of 4 days, 9 hours, 55 minutes and 45 seconds. Rambler saw her goal and expectations achieved when today she was officially named the corrected time winner of the race as well.
The Reichel Pugh-designed Rambler's corrected finish time of 105 hours, 55 minutes and 45 seconds, could not be beat by any of the four rivals that have since finished: Fortuna III, Esperanza, Clipper and Cangrejo.
Skipper Ken READ
(USA), said, "Well, we are obviously thrilled and a bit surprised with the "hat trick". The amazing thing - this is the third hat trick in less than a year for Rambler and the team. Many boats go through a life-time waiting for one. A testament to the owner, the boat, and the entire team."
READ, who is heading back to the USA to skipper his PUMA Ocean Racing team which is preparing for the upcoming 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race, which starts in October, continued, "Now it is on to a Volvo 70 for some of the Rambler crew, and the hope that we can create our own records while participating in the Volvo Ocean Race. Hopefully a little of the Rambler luck wears off on PUMA Ocean Racing!"
At press time, five boats were still racing, all less than 150 miles from the finish in the Baía de Guanabara at Rio, but in very slow conditions. Calculating their handicaps, none of these could beat the time of Rambler, giving the triple crown to the powerful super-maxi from the New York Yacht Club.
The first half of the race featured fast reaching conditions that Rambler revealed in, but after encountering a transition zone, the conditions became more tactical with the breeze going light and the on the nose. Despite this, the boat averaged 11.85 knots over the 1,123-nautical mile course.
The Offshore Race Rolex Buenos Aires - Rio de Janeiro is the second regatta in less then four months where Rambler has taken a triple victory: elapsed time, corrected time and race record. The previous time was at the Rolex Middle Sea Race, which took place in Malta, in October 2007. On that occasion, the 90-foot super-maxi established a new and impressive record of 47 hours, 55 minutes and 3 seconds in completing the 607 nm course of this classic Mediterranean regatta.
The crew of Rambler will leave Rio this week to sail the boat to the Caribbean to compete in Antigua Sailing Week in April. Following that, there are plans for Cork Week, Rolex Maxi Yacht Cup, and then to Malta to defend their title at the Rolex Middle Sea Race.
Offshore Race Rolex Buenos Aires - Rio de Janeiro - click here