Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Team Australia’s Sydney Hobart express ride

by Lisa Ratcliff on 23 Feb 2013
Hulls flying Team Australia & moth credit - New Sydney Hobart passage record holder Team Australia - blasts home Jane Austin
Sean Langman’s radical 60-foot trimaran Team Australia took the Tasman Sea express lane and this evening smashed the previous fastest time from Sydney to Hobart by a whopping 12 hours and a half hours.

They set a new elapsed time of 29 hours 52 minutes and 23 seconds, bettering the previous time set last December by Wild Oats XI by 12 hours 30 minutes 49 seconds.

Ahead of a 12-15 knot NE breeze, Team Australia coasted past the Castray Esplanade finish box, recording an unofficial finish time of 16:51:20 or 4.51pm.

This time will be verified by the recording device installed on the boat by World Sailing Speed Record Council representative John Brooks prior to leaving Sydney Heads yesterday morning.

Their start time from between North Head and the Hornby Lighthouse on South Head was 10:58:57 Friday morning, February 23, and average speed for the 630 nautical mile stretch was 21 knots.



An exhausted Sean Langman this evening said they never took their wet weather gear or lifejackets off, 'we were always on the edge, that’s what sailing these boats is like.' On their time he reckons there is still potential to take the record even lower. 'We’ll have another go when someone else breaks ours.'

After an hour’s sleep broken up into two 'cat naps' he was understandably drained as he spoke to Hobart media and well-wishers who have been following the trimaran’s progress via satellite tracking.

While Bob Oatley’s 100ft supermaxi Wild Oats XI will remain the Sydney Hobart yacht race record holder with their time of 42 hours 23 minutes and 12 seconds, the ORMA 60 trimaran Team Australia will be added to the WSSRC’s list of sanctioned passage records.

After a shaky start in the angry backwash off the cliffs at South Head yesterday morning, the seven crew, including skipper Sean Langman, son Peter Langman, Larry Jamieson, Shaun McKnight, James Ogilvie, Aaron Hampo and Josh Alexander rode the strong nor’easter across Bass Strait to arrive waterlogged into Hobart on a sunny summer’s afternoon.



With the passage record comfortably clinched, Team Australia’s new target this afternoon was to finish in less than 30 hours – they scraped in by a matter of seven and a half minutes.



The multihull’s top speed was recorded today, '39.6 knots….we are coming home HOT!!!' said Alexander, the excitement back in his voice as they steamed to the finish.

The optimal weather window was no fluke, Langman and Alexander worked closely with world renowned marine forecaster, Roger ‘Clouds’ Badham, in the lead-up to the attempt to hand pick the start time.

As well as optimum winds and sea state, timing the run ahead of the whale migration north and the possibility of hitting a giant humpback and causing major damage was a priority.

Langman’s greatest worry was hitting a submerged object or marine life at breakneck speed. In the end all they broke was one mainsail car, a small and relatively insignificant piece of plastic and a surprising outcome given the extreme sustained loads on the boat and gear.

The former French-owned trimaran was more than capable of withstanding the rigours of the passage to Hobart having in her former life been raced hard repeatedly across the North Atlantic and won the double-handed Transat Jacques Vabre from northern France to Brazil.

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
The Road to Rio now 99 days short
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for many crews: 'It's 106 miles to Chicago we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.' Whoops wrong movie.
Posted on 28 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
World Sailing Cup V3 - A Dead Rat in a Shoe or Spring Daffodils?
While a host of major sailing events go from strength to strength, the Sailing World Cup has very major issues. Last night my Irish better half was sitting beside me on the sofa watching an Australian version of the popular TV Cooking Program My Kitchen Rules on a tablet with her headphones while I was watching Diehard II for the seventeenth time (it’s a boy thing) on TV. She suddenly spluttered and laughed, took off her headphones and motioned for me to mute Diehard. (Seriously!!)
Posted on 9 Apr
Volvo Ocean Race appoints stadium racing pioneer as new CEO
Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Today his appointment has been confirmed.
Posted on 31 Mar
Large spectator fleet heading north for boat watching season
I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase, but it is insanely apt and hilarious all at the same time, however. I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase. It is insanely apt and hilarious, all at the same time, however. Well then, boat watching season is definitely upon us once more. The whales will soon be gathering again off the coast of Queensland to observe all manner of racing and cruising craft as they head North for a Winter in the sun.
Posted on 29 Mar
Barz Optics - FloatersBakewell-White Yacht DesignSouthern Spars - 100