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2010 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race Winners

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IRC SZCK and IRC Overall - Artemis Ocean Racing sailed by Jonny Malbon

IRC Super Zero - Ambersail sailed by Simonas Steponavicius

IRC Zero - Tonnerre de Breskens 3 sailed by Piet Vroon

IRC One - Encore sailed by Steven Anderson

IRC Two - Winsome sailed by Harry Heijst

Volvo 70 - Groupama 70 sailed by Franck Cammas

Class40 Division - Concise 2 sailed by Ned Collier Wakefield

 

End of an epic

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Volvo Open 70 Groupama smashed the Round Britain and Ireland Race Record. Photo: RORC/Rick TomlinsonThe Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race proved to be one of the most thrilling record-breaking races in years. There was drama, even before the start of this challenging race.

A potentially boat breaking low depression was predicted to hit the west coast of Ireland at precisely the moment when the majority of the fleet would be there and caught out with nowhere to run. To avoid the extreme weather the Royal Ocean Racing Club took the decision to reverse the course and race anti-clockwise around Britain and Ireland. The race is 1802 miles long and highly tactical with frequent changes to the weather and sea state. Racing around Britain and Ireland is a real challenge. At one time or another all of the competing yachts experienced some testing conditions and it would be over two weeks before some of the competitors would complete the course.

The Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race exploded into action on the 23rd August, under grey leaden skies and big breeze.

ICAP Leopard and Telefónica Azul were a hair-raising sight as RORC Chief Executive Eddie Warden Owen reported from the racecourse:

"It was a magnificent start, 25 knots from the southwest with gusts of up to 30 knots coming out of the Medina River. Telefónica was an impressive sight, built to race at full tilt around the world, she carried her enormous spinnaker to blast past Leopard at over 25 knots. It was a really impressive sight to see these huge machines charging down the Solent leaving the rest of the 27-strong fleet in their wake."

Volvo Open 70, Groupama, were 15 minutes late to start having been damaged on their mooring. The French team made a hasty repair and although Groupama started last, it wasn't long before they were screaming through the fleet, chasing ICAP Leopard and Telefónica Azul. However, Mike Slade's record attempt was short lived. Sadly, only hours after the start, ICAP Leopard was forced to retire with a broken boom gooseneck.

Telefónica Azul was scorching along at a blistering speed. After the first 24 hours of the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race the Spanish yacht had covered an astonishing 440 miles. Hurtling along behind them was Groupama, pushing hard.

Groupama were stalking their prey, waiting for any opportunity and it came by way of a rigging problem on Telefónica Azul. Groupama stormed into the lead and didn't put a foot wrong the whole race. Telefónica Azul got very close to catching their rivals but never managed to get passed them. Groupama crossed the Royal Yacht Squadron Line in under six days: smashing the course record by over 14 hours.

Read more: End of an epic

   

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Record Holders

World Record *
Outright

OMA07 Musandam-Oman Sail
Sidney Gavignet

2014: 3 days 03:32:36

World Record *
Monohull

UAE2 Azzam
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing/Ian Walker

2014: 4 days 13:10:28

World Record *
Monohull All-Female

SWE1929 SCA
Team SCA/Samantha Davies

2014: 4 days 21:00:39

World Record *
Monohull 60ft or less

GBR100 Artemis - Team Endeavour
Artemis Ocean Racing/Brian Thompson

2014: 5 days 14:00:54

World Record *
Monohull 40ft or less

GBR52 Swish
Roderick Knowles

2014: 8 days 19:06:49

* World records, ratified by the WSSRC