The following was submitted by Around Jamestown Record

A new outright record was set on Tuesday, October 19th for the  Around Jamestown Record.

Rob Spets on his Foiling Kiteboard Skellinger, completed the attempt around Jamestown with an elapsed time of 50 minutes and 48 seconds. This bests the previous record of 00:52:02, held by Jason Carroll’s Mod70 Argo by 1 minute and 14 seconds.

Rob chose to sail the course north from the start off Fort Adams at 12:17:48 EST. Spets departed in an 18-knot WSW breeze at the end of an ebbing tide.

This was Rob’s first attempt to set the Around Jamestown Record, however he had made practice runs in preparation.

Spets said on the record, “If I was going to sum it up, it was survival mode for about 60% of the run. I was super over-powered in the beginning, if I had a smaller kite would have flown it. I played it conservatively up the east passage and that was definitely the hardest part trying to hammer upwind and trying to get around the north end when it was nuking.

I had a game plan going into the attempt, it’s something I thought about and looked at for years and I did a couple of practice runs for fun on old equipment. It was really amazing to do it for real and actually get the record in my first record try, I’m kind of blown away.

I had my speed on my watch and I know I needed 22 knots to beat Argo and at the north end I was averaging 19, by the bridge I was averaging 21.5 and I thought ok this is maybe doable and at Beavertail I was at 22 and change, so I thought alright, this last bit is downwind so I can light it up.

The funny thing is there is room for improvement, I hit a school of fish just past the Jamestown bridge and that was my biggest wipeout. There were also a couple of touchdowns so I know there are local guys who could absolutely take it.”

About the Around Jamestown Record

Sailors have until October 31st to attempt to break the new outright record and also secure one of the other divisional records. If by October 31st, no other team in any division bests Spet’s outright record time, he will secure the outright record.

The Around Jamestown Record is a perpetual all out record for sailing around Conanicut Island (also known as Jamestown) in lower Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.

Similar to other outright speed records, contenders will decide when to make a record attempt and also the direction in which they will sail around Jamestown. This means contenders can choose the most advantageous weather conditions and tidal flow in which to attempt the record.

Five categories of sailing boats will be recognized to vie for divisional honors with the overall perpetual trophy going to the boat with the outright fastest time. The entry fee is $150.00 per attempt for any vessel 32’ and over, vessels under 32’ the fee is $70.00.

The annual divisions recognized are:

  • Monohull 32’ and Above  – 2014: 72’ mini-maxi, Bella Mente 01:19:35
  • Monohull below 32’ – 2013: Shaw 6.50, Manic, 2:00:29
  • Multihull 32’ and Above – 2020: Mod70 Argo, 00:52:02
  • Multihull below 32’ – 2014: F31, Bazinga!, 01:33:53
  • Kiteboards and All Foiling Craft – 2021: Foiling Kiteboard, Skellinger, 00:50:48

The record is open annually from Memorial Day until Halloween, October 31st during the hours of daylight.

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Ryan Belmore has been the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp since 2012. He also currently works for Mountain News, where he serves as Senior Editor - North America for OnTheSnow. He previously worked for the New England Patriots and American Cancer Society. He currently serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).