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Lucas Oil Ocean Cup team sets Golden Gate to Queen Mary record

by Barbara Biers on 18 Oct 2013
Lucas Oil Ocean Cup team in their 48’ APISA endurance boat Barbara Biers
The Lucas Oil Ocean Cup team in their 48’ APISA endurance boat left the Golden Gate behind them at just past 8:30 a.m. on October 12. They crossed the Queen Mary finish line just after sunset to establish a world record for the Golden Gate to Queen Mary endurance run at 9 hours, 50 minutes and 51 seconds. The American Power Boat Association (APBA) sanctions this world record, as well as the Union Internationale Motonautique (UIM), which is the world’s recognizing body.

'Mission accomplished,' said Nigel Hook, captain of teammates Andy Hindley, Dan MacNamara, and Lance Ware. 'The Pacific was vicious today, which isn’t unexpected, but the real impediment was the water in the diesel fuel which forced us to stop many times.' Andy Hindley was quoted as saying, 'There were more knocks and bangs during this 10-hour day trip than there were during the 52-day leg during the Round the World race.'

Excerpt from Hook's captain log: Our morning started at 5 a.m. in an apartment overlooking Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge.

As we left for the docks, the team was pumped up by the morning’s peacefulness. The tree leaves were very still, unlike the blustery day before. It seemed as though the tail end of the storm had indeed passed, just as had been predicted by the long-range weather forecast … the calm after the storm. But we encountered just the opposite on the water during the run to Long Beach.

We had moored both the 48’ APISA and the start boat, the 43’ Willard Interceptor, at St. Francis Yacht Club. APBA Officials, Frank Bunducci and Gloria Crim, arrived early to inspect the boat and sign off on safety gear. Sean Gunn, the dedicated cinematographer from Lucas Oil Productions who was filming for MAVTV, attached a barrage of GoPro cameras and began doing his interviews. After topping off the fuel tanks, my team checked in with the Coast Guard, who were nearby in a 60’ vessel and also overhead in a helicopter. All was ready, so we motored into the bay and hit the Golden Gate startling line just after 8:30 a.m.

Normally the bad sea conditions worsen as you round Point Conception, but we were relieved to find relative calm, well, at least down to six foot waves and welcome wind reduction. With damage to the cockpit liner and a minor cracked bulkhead, we nursed forward in cruise mode, until off Malibu we encountered more water in the fuel. We finally managed to sort the water issue, then Dan took back over, and we chased the daylight at top speed with the Queen Mary in our crosshairs.

From Lance: 'Despite the especially challenging seas that would have destroyed many a lesser boat, we carried to the finish with confidence. Post inspection of the boat showed minimal damage other than the windshield, a few cosmetic cracks, a minor structural stress crack in the rear bulkhead – a true testament to the Larry Smith design and build quality. I couldn’t have asked for a better team – their spirits never faltered. We invite others to challenge the record in the same sea Lucas Oil Ocean APBA website

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