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X-Yachts AUS X4 728 - 3

SOS Ocean Racing delayed by 24 hours

by SOS Media on 2 May 2010
Spinnaker Running - SOS Ocean Racing Save Our Seas - Ocean Racing http://www.sosoceanracing.com/
Save our Seas Ocean Racing was due to depart Airlie Beach today however a tracking unit has not turned up. SOS Ocean Racing is out to break the world record for non stop solo around Australia and is being ratified by the World Sailing Speed Record Council and part of the requirements is that there is a tracking unit giving a position every 15 minutes.

The tracker provided by OceanTracker.net was initially set to get position every 30 minutes however when the Black Box unit from the WSSRC was held up due to the Icelandic Volcano, it was decided to get a new unit sent up from Tasmania at the last minute.

It was sent up in what was meant to be overnight freight and was due to arrive at Proserpine Airport yesterday afternoon however it did not show.

Whilst Ian Thomson, the skipper intending to make this world record voyage, could take off today, the record may not be ratified or would take longer so rather than risk this, he has decided to delay until the unit arrives which will hopefully be on today's plane. This will allow him to leave tomorrow (Monday)

Ian commented 'It is a bit of a pain as everyone was due to come to send me off and boats were organised etc but I don't want to risk the record being ratified so it is in my best interest to wait. We all know sailing is about waiting and if this was a cruise you would set off at anytime the weather looked good but this is an official world record attempt and everything needs to be in place. It also gives me another day to check the systems which won't hurt either'

Ian tells us the weather window is still open, in fact it is improving and he could leave as late as Wednesday and still be in good wind for the early stages of the passage. However the boat is ready and Ian is ready so he will set off at the earliest possible chance.

Ian is trying to break the world record set by David Beard of 68d:8h:30m however this record was never ratified and is only in the Guinness Book of Records.

This does not take anything away from David's record as he is the only person to sail solo non-stop around Australia however he did not have to abide by the regulations set by the WSSRC.

Ian's attempt is not just about setting a new world record, he is creating awareness of the damage plastic bags are doing to our environment. As a commercial skipper in the Whitsundays Ian has pulled several turtles out of the water killed by the 'Convenient' plastic bag and he wants to campaign the government to change regulations relating to them.

The campaign includes a poll on his website at www.sosoceanracing.com where you can give your thoughts as to what the Australian Government should do with the current regulations.

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