Elapsed Time Records
The entire Bermuda Race fleet got off the starting line so fast in the moderate to fresh northeast wind on Friday afternoon that everybodys mind naturally ran to new elapsed time records. A fast Hinckley powerboat carrying one of the races media reps had to do 14 knots just to keep up with the Open Division big boats as they raced out of Narragansett Bay into Block Island Sound.
There are two categories of Newport Bermuda Race elapsed time records, Lighthouse Divisions (water ballast and cant keels not allowed) and Open Division (water ballast and cant keels permitted).
The race record for best elapsed time in the two Lighthouse Divisions (St. Davids and Gibbs Hill) was set by Roy Disneys Pyewacket in 2002. Pushed by fresh winds and carried by a long favorable eddy, Pyewacket did the 635-mile course in 53 hours, 29 minutes, 22 seconds. Her average speed was 11.8 knots.
The best elapsed time in the Open Division was set in 2004 by Morning Glory, owned by Hasso Plattner of Germany. Her time was 48:38:31, with an average speed of 13.066 knots.
Any boat that can average better speeds will break the records. Here are some speed/elapsed time ratios for the 635-mile Newport Bermuda course: 15kn/42.33 hrs;14.5kn/43.8hrs; 14kn/45.36hrs; 13.5kn/ 47.04hrs.
And here are the starting times on Friday for the big boats: St. Davids Lighthouse, 1410; Gibbs Hill Lighthouse, 1430; Open Division, 1530 hrs. Using the Yellowbrick tracker you should be able to estimate the elapsed time.
Remember, theres a 6-hour delay until about 2 a.m. Sunday. Check the latest forecasts to see what winds coming up.