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30 March 2006

Omega, Official Timekeeper to Ellen MacArthur’s, the fastest solo sailor around the world, Asian Record Circuit 2006

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Biel (Switzerland), 13 March 2006 – Omega Ambassador Ellen MacArthur, 29 years of age, and her crew will sail between a number of Asian cities on the B&Q trimaran, in their attempt to establish new record times over 10 legs with 12 record opportunities between key ports, starting from Yokohama, Japan on the 25th of March and, South Korea, Chinese mainland and Taiwan, Hong Kong SAR, Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore

The records set will leave a lasting legacy for future sailors to challenge creating another chapter in the history of the world of record-breaking .

Ever since she was old enough to save her school dinner money to buy her first boat, Ellen MacArthur has lived for sailing. By the time she joined the Omega family of ambassadors in October 2002, she already held the record as fastest female to race solo around the world in the 2000/2001 Vendée Globe and the transatlantic east-west solo record from Plymouth (UK) to Newport (US). Only a couple of months after becoming an Omega ambassador, she went on to win Class 1 Open 60 in the Route du Rhum on board the Kingfisher monohull, setting a new record of 13 days, 13 hours and 31 minutes in the IMOCA Open 60 class.

In 2004, although she narrowly missed breaking the transatlantic west-east solo record by only 75 minutes, she nevertheless set a new female record for the single-handed crossing. This was the first flat-out test for the new B&Q/Castorama trimaran before it set off on the voyage for which it was intended: Ellen’s attempt to break the record for single-handedly sailing non-stop around the world.

On the 7th of February 2005, Ellen MacArthur and her 75 foot trimaran B&Q crossed the finish line between Ushant and Lizard at 22:29.17 GMT, setting a new world record  of 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes and 33 seconds for the non-stop single-handed circumnavigation of the planet, thus beating the already incredible time set only the previous year by Frenchman Francis Joyon.

Dame Ellen MacArthur has already proven herself as a yachtswoman of extraordinary character, stamina and resistance on several occasions. In this new series of records, Ellen and her crew will sail 4505 nautical miles in about 23 days – their only competitor will be the on-board Omega clock that will countdown the time to her records. (Please see below for her records schedule).  They will be pushing the 75foot trimaran at 100% in their efforts to establish these new records in new territory – a record-breaking campaign such as this has never been undertaken before.

Omega has enjoyed an unparalleled reputation in the field of Sports Timekeeping, notably having acted as Official Timekeeper at 22 Olympic Games, including the Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games. The association with the Olympic Games began in 1932 in Los Angeles, where Omega was the first company ever to be appointed Official Timekeeper of all Olympic disciplines. Furthermore, since the early part of the 20th century, OMEGA has timed not only the Olympic Games, but also other major international sports events in athletics, swimming and sailing.

Omega is extremely proud to be the official timekeeper of Ellen’s Asian Record Circuit and will support her for the 12 records she will attempt. Like Ellen can rely on her B&Q trimaran, she has chosen the Omega Seamaster watch which will withstand the travails of her voyage, just as it was built to.

For further information on Ellen’s voyage see http://www.teamellen.com/omega

 

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