A TEAM of Hampshire engineers have broken the world speed sailing record with their revolutionary sailing boat.
After two years of repeated attempts, the crew of Cowes built Vesta Sailrocket 2 comfortably beat the record with an average speed of 55.65 knots by clocking up an 59 knot average off the coast of Nambia.
Team leader Paul Larsen said: “We are buzzing - no-one has done this with a sailing boat before.
“This shows how unique and revolutionary the boat is.”
The ship was built in the VESTAS R and D facilities on the Isle of Wight and launched in the Medina River in March 2011.
Since their previous attempts the team have been working on making the boat faster but crucially more stable.
The record was previously held by French foiling yacht Hydroptere and most recently by a kite surfer who hit 55.65 knots (64mph).
The Sailrocket team hit headlines in 2008 when the predecessor to Vestas Sailrocket reached 47.4 knots (55mph) off the coast of Namibia setting a new Category B speed sailing world record.
Since then the outright world record has been smashed twice, once by French foiling yacht Hydroptere and most recently by a kite surfer who hit 55.65 knots (64mph).