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World’s coolest boats: Virgin Atlantic Challenger 2 is as cool as the icebergs it dodged


Each month we pick out an iconic boat that can lay claim to the title of world’s coolest boat. This month, we take a closer look at Virgin Atlantic Challenger 2…

Virgin Atlantic Challenger 2 only beat Blue Riband records by two hours.
Richard Branson and Thatcher celebrate his record

The Blue Riband of the Atlantic Trophy has been around since 1890. It’s an accolade given to the passenger liner crossing the Atlantic Ocean in regular service with the record highest average speed. The Queen Mary The record was first set in 1938 by an impressive average of 31,69 knots. This was beaten only a few short years later, by United States 35.59 knots.

Richard Branson, thinking it was a clever idea, commissioned a boat to make the crossing and claim the title. He was on board himself as a paying customer in an attempt to qualify as a ship that carries passengers.

In 1985, he and a crew experienced in powerboating set out with him from New York aboard a 65ft boat called Virgin Atlantic Challenger It was less than 100 miles from the Bishop Rock finishing line when, after three and a half days of racing, it hit an object submerged in water and sank.

The rescue helicopter and its crew crossed the finish line together.

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