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14 October 2004, 09:32 am
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Round the World Record Attempt
Round the World

Since returning to her French base in Lorient in mid-September, the 75-foot trimaran B&Q has been undergoing an intensive refit to get her in 'round the world' record mode for Ellen MACARTHUR.
A team headed up by Project Manager, Oli ALLARD, has been working round the clock to prepare B&Q to go back in the water this Friday.

"The work list was pretty long, but, as usual, the guys have been doing a great job and nearly every box is now ticked.

Once she is craned back in the water, the rig will go in and then we will back doing some further sea trials and media work before sailing B&Q to Plymouth in the UK to officially go on standby for our attempt on the solo, round the world record.

The main refit work has focused on a major structural check, overhaul and refit of new deck gear, replacement of rigging and running rigging as well as a full suite of new sails including a new Code 0 (front sail).

In addition, the team have installed a new, potentially, life-saving system that allows Ellen to operate a launching mechanism for a single person life raft in a man overboard situation via remote control.

"If you fall or get knocked overboard when sailing solo the prospects are pretty grim, but with this new system that has been pioneered in France, I can launch the life raft away from the boat."

If all goes to plan, Ellen hopes B&Q will be on standby from mid-November. B&Q will leave Lorient in France for Plymouth where she will be stationed on standby for her solo, round the world record attempt.

In her quest to become the fastest solo sailor on the planet, Ellen will have to beat the existing record set by Joyon on his 90ft trimaran, IDEC, of 72 days, 22 hours, 54 minutes and 22 seconds.
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