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Displaying items by tag: Round Ireland Speed Sailing Record

Day One (start): Just coming up to 4pm on Sunday, 29th October 2023, Ireland's leading solo sailor, the French-based Tom Dolan, embarked on his latest adventure to round Ireland in under four days and break the 2020 doublehanded record according to the bid lodged with the World Speed Sailing Record Council. He is also attempting what he describes as a 'faux' solo record.

The wait is over, and at 1500 hours and 50 minutes and 33 seconds, Dolan headed north, leaving behind the starting line between Dún Laoghaire harbour and the Kish lighthouse to establish a new time for the fastest sailing time around Ireland.

Fast sailing - Tom Dolan made a great start to his Round Ireland record bid off Dublin Bay Photo: AfloatFast sailing - Tom Dolan made a great start to his Round Ireland record bid off Dublin Bay Photo: Afloat

Before the start, Dolan said: “I’ll be taking advantage of a SE’ly wind to set sail. The wind is expected to back Easterly and then NE’ly as I make my way around the island, which should mean I will be sailing downwind practically from start to finish, with just a short tricky stretch on Tuesday afternoon around the Fastnet, due to an area of light winds, but which should not last,” explained the Irish sailor, who will set off anti-clockwise around Ireland.

It’s a northabout journey of 700 nautical miles around Ireland and all its islands; his seven-sail boat can hit speeds of up to 26 knots, or 52km per hour, but averaging much less than that, about seven knots.

“If the weather forecast is right, I would hope to cover the 698 miles in three and a half days,” said Tom, who, respecting Irish shipping rules, must keep a permanent watch and remain alert. He is accompanied by Andrew Smith, a media man who, of course, will not be involved in the boat's performance. “It all seems to be falling into place, which means I am optimistic. In any case, I must not hang around as a nasty weather system (gales) is due to sweep across Ireland on Wednesday,” the sailor concluded.

Dolan at full speed in the early part of his record bid with media man Andrew Smith documenting the attemptDolan at full speed in the early part of his record bid off the Dublin coast with media man Andrew Smith at the stern documenting the attempt Photo: Afloat

Dolan was rewarded with 15-knot winds from the southeast at start time and big following seas to sweep past the startline at full speed under spinnaker.

The forecasts say he will get strong easterly winds of 25-30kts around the north coast of Ireland before winds become westerly on Wednesday, which he hopes will carry him around Ireland entirely downwind.

This afternoon's record start time was officiated by Irish World Speed Sailing Commissioner for Ireland Paddy Boyd, who authenticated the record bid at the Kish Light.

In order to comply with the rules of Irish maritime affairs prohibiting single-handed sailing for several years, the skipper will be accompanied by a media man. Under no circumstances will the latter affect the performance of the boat, Dolan claims.

Dolan has agreed with the World Sailing Speed Record Council (WSSRC) that he will attempt to break the 'Round Ireland Double-handed less than 40ft record'.

Dolan hopes to return to the Kish within three days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds to break the doublehanded record and set a new 'faux' record solo record Photo: AfloatDolan hopes to return to the Kish within three days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds to break the doublehanded record and set a new 'faux' record solo record Photo: Afloat

While the WSSC is not recording this as a solo attempt (as Dolan has a journalist onboard), Dolan says he is also seeking to set a 'faux record' by attempting to break the Belgian Michel Kleinjan's solo 2005 record time.

Reference times are the 2005 solo record by Kleinjans aboard a Class40: 4 days, 1 hour and 53 minutes and 29 seconds and the doublehanded record set in 2020 by Pamela Lee and Catherine Hunt on a Figaro 3 of 3 days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds.

All going well, Dolan is expected home on Wednesday night or early Thursday morning with a predicted time of 3 days and 16 hours based on current GRIBS

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Published in Tom Dolan

Northumberland's Ross Hobson has postponed his Round Ireland speed sailing record attempt until later in the year. 

"The weather has just not ‘played’ ball for us, and we plan to bring Pegasus back to HYS next weekend to work up for the Fastnet race", Hobson told Afloat.

On March 12, the attempt on the doublehanded record was described as 'imminent' as UK sailors Hobson and Adrian Banks were put on standby.

The time to beat is three days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds, established by the foiling Figaro 3 Magenta Project - double-handed by Greystone's Pamela Lee and Cat Hunt - in October 2020.

Hobson and Banks of the Royal Ocean Racing Club were making the bid in the Open 50 monohull, Pegasus, a boat Hobson has previously steered in the Round Ireland Yacht Race. 

"Many thanks to everyone for supporting us, and ‘we will be back’, Hobson said.

Solo record bid

Meanwhile, solo sailor Tom Dolan hopes to set a separate solo Round Ireland speed sailing record this month or next. He has positioned his Figaro 3 in Dun Laoghaire, awaiting a weather window.

As Aflaot reported previously, the record bid will see Dolan sail from Kish to Kish in either direction around Ireland, a distance of some 700 miles.

The record bid will be officiated by the newly appointed World Speed Sailing Commissioner for Ireland, Paddy Boyd.

RORC skipper Ross Hobson, aiming to beat the doublehanded Round Ireland Speed Sailing Record, has postponed his record bid.

The Open 50 'Pegasus of Northumberland' remains in Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and Hobson and Adrian Banks are 'awaiting direction from weather routers' on the next available weather opportunity.

As Afloat reported previously, the time to beat is three days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds, established by the foiling Figaro 3 Magenta Project - double-handed by Greystones's Pamela Lee and Cat Hunt - in October 2020.

The record attempt must be made from Kish to Kish on Dublin Bay in either direction around Ireland, a distance of some 700 miles.

More details as we have them

An attempt on the doublehanded Round Ireland speed sailing record is imminent. 

UK sailors Ross Hobson and Adrian Banks from Northumberland are on their way to Dun Laoghaire Harbour and will be on standby for the record bid as soon as they arrive in Dublin Bay. 

Weather forecasts show solid southwesterly winds of 30 mph and more across Ireland from tonight (March 11th) until next Wednesday evening.

The time to beat is three days, 19 hours, 41 minutes and 39 seconds, established by the foiling Figaro 3 Magenta Project - double-handed by Greystone's Pamela Lee and Cat Hunt - in October 2020.

Hobson and Banks of the Royal Ocean Racing Club are making the bid in the Open 50 monohull, Pegasus, a boat Hobson has previously steered in the Round Ireland Yacht Race.

The record bid will see the duo sail from Kish to Kish in either direction around Ireland, a distance of some 700 miles.

The record bid will be officiated by the newly appointed World Speed Sailing Commissioner for Ireland, Paddy Boyd.

The official Round Ireland Records line is eight miles long between the Kish Lighthouse and the Dun Laoghaire East Pier Lighthouse.

The massive French trimaran Maxi Spindrift 2 is en route to Dun Laoghaire from France to attempt to beat Phaedo's Round Ireland Speed Sailing Record set in a time of 36 hours and 52 minutes in August last year.

The current low pressure over Ireland has attracted the attempt by the Brittany based Tri. The boat is capable of speeds up to 50–knots and can average over 30–knots for long distances in the right conditions. 

Founded by French sailors, Dona Bertarelli and Yann Guichard in 2011, the 40-metre maxi-trimaran is on the hunt for global speed records. This November the crew will make a Round the World Record bid for the Jules Verne Trophy.

Ireland's World Speed Sailing Commissioner, Chris Moore, of the National Yacht Club says the latest report is that Spindrift 2 is due to start in a line between Dun Laoghaire's East Pier and the Kish Lighthouse on Dublin Bay some time early tomorrow morning. 

Published in News Update

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