Team Britannia will not make the start of the Southampton Boat Show despite ‘Herculean efforts’ on behalf of all concerned

Team Britannia will not make the start of the Southampton Boat Show despite ‘Herculean efforts’ on behalf of all concerned.

But everything will be ready for the start of their round-the-world challenge on October 23, a spokesman revealed.

Professor Bob Cripps’ multi-million-pound design hopes to be the fastest and most fuel-efficient semi-wave slicing powerboat to circumnavigate the globe.

It will be powered by a revolutionary fuel emulsion, a mixture of diesel, water and emulsifying agent, from Clean Fuel Ltd to reduce harmful emissions such as particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide.

Despite disappointment at the project timeline slipping, the team remain ‘overwhelmingly positive’.

Plating of the hull is well underway as is construction of the cabin. The tanks, engines and jets are ready to slide into place and a decision was taken a month ago to wrap the boat, saving about five-six weeks.

All the other equipment is on its way, or at the yard and will be dropped into place as soon as the cabin and hull are fixed together.

“We are in discussion with two major companies about being title sponsors and our wounded and injured veterans start training this week, courtesy of the University of Southampton,” said the spokesman.

“We continue to secure sponsorship deals and partnerships, the latest with a major clothing company, which will be announced over the coming weeks.  This supplements all the other amazing support we have got from companies like Raymarine, GAC, Park it Here Products, Prosperity, Parker, Orca – the list is considerable,” he added.

The boat’s environmental programme is going particularly well. “Happy to report that everything from the emulsified diesel and anti-mosquito wrist bands to the non-engine room fire-extinguishers will have less adverse effect on the environment or be completely safe,” said the spokesman.

The Aluminium Boatbuilding Company made the 80-foot long boat using marine grade aluminium produced by Blackburn metals and laser cut by specialist firm Aalco in Southampton.

The boat will also showcase nearly a dozen leading marine companies supporting the project with their expertise and equipment.

The 12-strong crew will launch their record bid from Europa Point in Gibraltar.

The World Record Authorities – Union Internationale Motonautique or UIM – dictate the craft has to pass through the Suez and Panama Canals, cross the Tropic of Cancer and the Equator and must start and finish in the same place.