Prospector, a 68 foot vessel built in 2008 at New England Boatworks, took more than two hours off the previous record, covering the distance in 28 hours 28 minutes and 50 seconds. This breaks the record held by Bella Pita, also a US boat, that was set in 2011. The previous record held by the Tripp designed 75-foot Bella Pita stood at 30 hours 46 minutes. Prospector crossed the finish line in Halifax harbour at 18:28:50 on Monday evening, eight hours before the next yacht. A fleet of 73 boats left Marblehead, Mass. early Sunday afternoon, racing in a variety of different classes.
Prospector’s owners, Paul McDowell, David Siwicki and Larry Landry were on board for the race, speaking enthusiastically about the sailing conditions they encountered.
Landry said “it’s amazing to be on boat that can go this fast. Prospector is one of the best monohulls in the world.”
McDowell said the team hadn’t registered for the race with the idea of challenging the record. But he said once they looked at the predictions for weather and their best track, they knew there was a chance. “We didn’t talk about it on board so I didn’t know until we crossed the finish line this evening that we had broken the record.” McDowell said the sailing conditions starting out in Marblehead were beautiful and they “couldn’t have been better” as the race progressed.
Landry says the team plans to take Prospector to the Pacific next year to participate in the Transpac and the Sydney to Hobart Race.
Thirteen of the boats in the race are Canadian, most from the Halifax area.