This week, the racing yacht VOR70 Maserati finished its run from Miami to New York City. Intended as a record attempt, skipper Giovanni Soldini elected not to have the final time of the transit ratified because he didn't feel it was reflective of the real speed Maserati is capable of. (The boat had to deal with several weather systems on its way up from Florida, which slowed it. Another attempt at a better time will be made in the future.)
With the boat spending a few days at Manhattan's North Cove marina, just outside the World Financial Center, Maserati invited us down to take a look in person. Maserati, a 70-foot, carbon-fiber monohull, contested the 2008 Volvo Ocean Race under a different moniker. It was subsequently overhauled, had its weight distribution adjusted, and made 10 percent lighter, after which it was reintroduced in its current form, with Maserati as its primary sponsor.
It's capable of traveling at an incredible 40 knots under sail (hence the 46 mph reference in the headline), and what's striking about Maserati in person is that in addition to the hull itself, almost everything else on board is made of carbon fiber: the wheels at the helm, the mast, the grinders and winches, and so on. I pointed at one of the big winches on deck and asked watch leader Brad Van Liew, "How much is that?"
"Around $80,000," he answered. The whole boat apparently cost around $8,000,000. It's the state of the art, and if you're in Manhattan, you might still be able to check it out in person. It's due to head out on another speed record attempt (destination: Cape Lizard, UK) in the coming days.
If you want to follow the ongoing exploits of VOR70 Maserati, bookmark Maserati.Soldini.it for news, blogs, video, the crew's Twitter feeds, and more.