Revolutionary new carbon propellers appear to be failing after just one day

Just 16 hours after departure from Barbados on Saturday morning, a team attempting to break the circumnavigation speed record has had to drastically cut speed. The 24mEarthrace, a wave-piercing trimaran design sporting state-of-the-art carbon propellers and running on bio-diesel is attempting to break the 75-day record set byCable and Wirelessin 1998.

The team reported excessive vibration at about 1am Sunday morning and inspected the props with a torch.EarthraceSkipper Pete Bethune told the shore team: “All the blades have sections where the carbon is peeling away, and the entire leading edge of one blade is coming to bits.”

The boat with a top speed of 45 knots is continuing on towards Panama at just 12 knots and according to the location map at www.earthrace.net appears to be located just north of the Venzuela-Colombia border.