Peter Aschenbrenner’s silver Nigel Irens-designed 63-foot trimaran, Paradox, crossed the finish line of the 2018 RORC Caribbean 600 with an elapsed time of 1 day, 13 hours 5 minutes and 16 seconds to win multihull line honors after sailing a blistering pace around the 600-mile racecourse, at regularly sustained speeds of 20 to 30 knots. Less than 30 minutes later, it was George David’s Maxi Rambler 88 pulling in to take monohull line honors and reducing the race record to 1 day 13 hours 41 minutes and 45 seconds, nearly two and a half hours less than David’s 2011 record with Rambler 100.
“Evolution in design,” is how David attributed the new record pace. “Six years ago, the conditions were the same, yet we’re 2.5 hours ahead of a 100-foot boat. The boat goes faster.” Modifications in the past year have included a deeper fin (to 23 feet) and a 1.5-ton displacement diet. “The boat is lighter and livelier,” David told race reporter Louay Habib. “When it falls out of the groove, you turn it down and away it goes.”
The pre-race forecast of fast reaching conditions came to fruition and David reported experiencing 20 to 25 knots of wind the entire race. “The whole boat was loaded up and we had to take extreme care. We sailed a good race and didn’t leave much out there.”
Still, he confesses, Rambler’s new record remains beatable.
For Aschenbrenner and his crew, the pace of the race was manic but manageable. “The ride down from Tintamarre to Guadeloupe was at night, very fast, very wet and very intense,” said Aschenbrenner. “All-in-all, the conditions were just perfect for Paradox. The wave state was really big and there was a lot of wind.”
PAST RESULTS: RORC CARIBBEAN 600 TROPHY – IRC OVERALL
(Best best corrected time under IRC)
2017 – Hap Fauth, Bella Mente, JV7 (USA)
2016 – George Sakellaris, Maxi 72, Proteus (USA)
2015 – Hap Fauth, JV72, Bella Mente (USA)
2014 – George Sakellaris, RP72, Shockwave (USA)
2013 – Ron O’Hanley, Privateer, Cookson 50 (USA)
2012 – Niklas Zennström’s JV72, Rán (GBR)
2011 – George David, Rambler 100, JK 100 (USA)
2010 – Karl C L Kwok, Beau Geste, Farr 80 (HKG)
2009 – Adrian Lee, Lee Overlay Partners, Cookson 50 (IRL)