Jim Cooney, best known as the owner of Brindabella and Maserati purchased LDV Comanche in December with his wife, Samantha Grant, and will skipper her in this year’s race. He will be crewed by his daughter Julia, son James, ex Waratah Jeremy Tilse and familiar faces from Comanche’s 2014 and 2015 campaigns and face InfoTrack, Wild Oats XI and Black Jack (former Alfa Romeo), the yacht Crichton sailed to line honours from WOXI in the 2009 race. Comanche contested the Hobart brand new in 2014, finishing 49 mins behind WOXI, and 2015 when she took line honours from Ragamuffin 100. Now the downwind flyer is back. In 2017, the yacht smashed the 2225 Transpac monohull record, half a day faster than the 2009 record of Crichton's ex Alfa Romeo. This after taking 24 hours off Marie Cha IV’s Transatlantic record, sailing 2880nm at an average of 21.44 knots. Now it’s time for Cooney, a chartered engineer who made his name in the communications industry before diversifying in the pioneering days of wind farms in the northern hemisphere.
In May 2015, Comanche took the record/line//overall treble in the Block Island Race, then on July 12,2015, set a new 24 hour monohull speed record in the Transatlantic Race, covering 618.01 nautical miles (25.75 knot average). To put it in perspective, that’s just 10nm less than the Sydney Hobart. In August she won line honours in the fluky, light Rolex Fastnet Race by four and a half minutes after a race-long battle, with Rambler 88, then took line honours in all four races at the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup.
|Yacht Name||LDV Comanche|
|Owner||Jim Cooney & Samantha Grant|
|Skipper||Jim Cooney (7)|
|Sailing Master||Casey Smith (1)|
|Crew||J Cooney (2), J Cooney (1), J Tilse (2), S Pollard (7), J Cressant, N Burridge, W Fleury, J von Schwarz (3), S Falcone, D De Ridder, K Harrap, R Godfrey (11), K Keeley, J Slattery, T Rae, J Spithill, D Rolfe, B Jackson|
|Designer||Verdier Yacht Design & VPLP, France|
|Builder||Hodgdon Yachts USA|