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TransPac Record Crushed!!!

The final divisions of this year’s TransPac Race got underway on Saturday.

© Peter Drasnin

A brilliant new record has been set in the TransPac — ‘The Best 24-Hour Run for a Boat with a Built-In Pizza Oven That Is Starting a Circumnavigation’. That’s correct, our fun-loving young St. Barth friend Lloyd Thornburg and top crew aboard his rust-colored Morrelli & Melvin designed Gunboat 66 Phaedo has turned in a 24-hour run of 427 miles! (Their 24-hour roll call-to-roll call time distance was 416 miles.) Their top speed was just over 28 knots.

Phaedo has set a new, sadly unofficial, TransPac record: The Best 24-Hour Run for a Boat with a Built-In Pizza Oven That Is Starting a Circumnavigation.

©2013 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Thornburg has really moved up in performance from the days he sailed a Pacific Seacraft 24, Bristol Channel Cutter 28, and a Soling out of Marina del Rey while he was a student at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. And that wasn’t too many years ago. He’s already raced Phaedo across the Atlantic three times, done the Fastnet Race (and stood by after Rambler 100 flipped) and several Caribbean 600s. And yes, the cruising cat does fly a-hull. Paul Hand is the boat’s skipper, and for the TransPac they’ve taken on around-the-world multihull vet Brian Thompson, formerly of Sausalito, and several other pros.

As fast as Phaedo has been sailing, her designer, Newport Beach’s Gino Morrelli, is 150 miles ahead aboard John Sangmeister’s Long Beach-based 72-ft trimaran Lending Club (née Tritium). The tri is the bare-bones all-out racing machine fashioned from the skeleton of an ORMA 60. She was previously used by the Artemis America’s Cup team. Lending Club turned in a 446-mile 24-hour run. Sangmeister’s goal to is crush the TransPac’s elapsed-time record.

UPDATE, 5 P.M. MONDAY — Oops. We’ve just learned that Phaedo dismasted this afternoon. Although we don’t have complete details yet, we do know that she was running downwind under a large spinnaker, with Thomburg at he helm. He suddenly heard a loud cracking sound and the stick came down. Luckily, no one was injured. We hope to bring you a further update tomorrow. 

Lending Club as seen in Phaedo’s wake, a temporary condition.

©2013 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Only two other boats in the 58-boat fleet turned in 24-hour runs in excess of 400 miles. They were the Volvo 70 Maserati from Italy, which turned in 423 miles, and the 100-ft Ragamuffin 100 from Australia, which turned in 412 miles. Maserati stands first in Class 1 while Ragamuffin is last in Class 1.

The entire fleet did quite well yesterday except for Classes 7 and 8, which had enjoyed such a great getaway from the coast. Matt Brooks’ classic S&S 52 Dorade from the St. Francis YC continues to lead those two divisions, but has plummeted in fleet from 1st to 15th. If you lose the good wind, you lose your position.

It’s the classic ultralight sleds in Class 3 that own the top three spots in fleet. Roy P. Disney’s Andrews 70 Pyewacket, now 17 years old, is in first; James McDowell’s rarely beaten and even older Santa Cruz 70 Grand Illusion is in second; while Per Peterson’s San Diego-based Andrews 68 Alchemy is in third. With none of these sleds coming within 100 miles of the 66-ft cruising cat Phaedo‘s 24-hour run, one has to wonder if any West Coast sled owners are going to go over to the dark side. Of course, there is the issue of Phaedo costing about 10 times as much as any of the sleds in the top three spots.

Anyway, it’s a great TransPac, so be sure to follow the progress on their website.

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