Round the world boat leaves Spain this month

The second Earthrace attempt to break the Round the World Powerboat Record gets underway on 29 March.

The international crew, led by New Zealander Pete Bethune, leave Sagunto, near Valencia, hoping to beat the 75-day mark set by British boat Cable and Wireless Adventurer in 1998.

They need to be back in Sagunto by 10 June.

Five attempts have failed to better the mark, including Earthrace’s own first bid last year, which was plunged into disaster early on when they collided with a Guatamalan fishing skiff and killed one man.

The over-riding aim of the project is to raise awareness of the potential of biofuels and encourage people to lead more sustainable lives. The boat is run on biodiesel donated by SGC Energia in Portugal; the fuel is derived from waste cooking oil, as well as soya and canola oils.

To back up the sustainable message, the boat has been made using “environmentally friendly components”, such as hemp, and the project claims to maintain a carbon neutral status through the purchase of carbon offsets from www.downwithcarbon.org which uses the income to fund a sustainable biofuel project in Egypt.

The offsets account for any CO2 produced through transportation of the biofuel to the different fuel stops, the biofuel itself, and all travel undertaken by the ground crew, it is claimed.

The full record route is as follows:
Sagunto – Azores – Puerto Rico – Panama Canal – Manzanillo (Mexico) – San Diego – Hawaii – Marshall Islands – Palau – Singapore – Cochin – Oman – Suez Canal – Sagunto.

Skipper Pete says: “We are fully committed to beating the Round the World Speed Record this time, and we do not intend to leave anything to chance.”

www.earthrace.net