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  Saturday, 15 June, 2002, 04:45 GMT 05:45 UK
Edwards sets 24-hour record
Edwards at February's launch of the Maiden II project
Edwards at February's launch of the Maiden II project
British sailor Tracy Edwards has set a record for the furthest distance sailed by a multihull yacht in 24 hours, her press office reported on Friday.

At the helm of Maiden II (formerly Club Med), Edwards covered 697 miles at an average speed of 29 knots off the American harbour of Newport.

The previous record was 687.17 miles, set by American millionaire adventurer and sailor Steve Fossett in October 2001.

Maiden II crew member Adrienne Cahalan explained how the team had to cope with a ridge of high pressure and rough seas that threatened their record attempt.

"The record didn't all go our way. For the first six hours we averaged between 30-33 knots, but then we hit rough seas that slowed us down quite a bit," she said from on board.


We knew the competition would heat up for this record
Steve Fossett

"Then the wind died for a bit, so we had eight hours averaging as low as 22 knots.

"That was quite a low point for us as we realised how tough it was going to be to break the record.

"Fourteen hours into the attempt the wind filled in, and we were back on track.

"As we'd done so well early on, we had enough of a buffer to go for it."

Fossett said: "We knew the competition would heat up for this record.

"There are five boats which can contend for it, and we didn't think our record would last for more than about a year.

"But this is one time I wish we hadn't been right - it would have been nice to keep it a little longer."

Earlier this year, Edwards announced that she will be aiming to break the record time for sailing around the world non-stop.

She will enter the Jules Verne race in January 2003, where one of her main rivals will be fellow British yachtswoman Ellen MacArthur.

See also:

03 Jun 02 | Sailing
06 May 02 | Sailing
27 Mar 02 | Sailing
25 Feb 02 | Sailing
03 Jan 02 | Sailing
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