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Saturday, 1 February, 2003, 16:33 GMT
MacArthur pushes on
Ellen McArthur's Kingfisher 2
Kingfisher 2 has picked up the pace
Ellen MacArthur and her crew have pushed on despite more treacherous weather conditions on their Jules Verne round-the-world record attempt.

The 14-strong crew of the giant catamaran Kingfisher 2 experienced strong winds and rough seas as soon as they set sail and have continued to battle the elements.

MacArthur said that the boat was "going the right direction, at the right speed", with Kingfisher expected to head for the equator during the next 24 hours.

Although the boat sailed 439 nautical miles in their last 24-hour period, it is already seven hours behind the record pace set by Orange.

Nevertheless, Kingfisher has started to feel the first effects of the Trade Winds as it sails towards the equator in warmer conditions.

"It has been difficult start for few of the crew since the start - very rough conditions, everyone was tired and pretty daunting prospect for those that have not been round before," said MacArthur.

"But in some ways it was a good way to start as everyone is thinking of the safety of themselves and the boat."

According to MacArthur, the communications equipment has been damaged, which means the weather information they receive may not be as comprehensive.

MacArthur and her crew of 13 are aiming to beat the record of 64 days, eight hours, 37 minutes and 20 seconds, set last May by Frenchman Bruno Peyron.


Ellen MacArthur's Jules Verne Trophy record bid

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