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VIDEO: Smashing victory

Comanche, the 100-foot screamer owned by Jim and Kristy Hinze Clark and skippered by Ken Read, crossed the line off Bermuda’s St. David’s Lighthouse at 4:22:53 a.m. EDT on Sunday.

Her elapsed time was a provisional 34 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds, more than four hours ahead of the previous 39:39:18, which George David set in Rambler in 2012.

Read attributed the line-honors victory to the Clarks’ commitment to build a boat expressly for setting records and the performance of his professional crew, especially navigator Stan Honey.

Honey found a crack in the high-pressure ridge stretching across the rhumb line on the opening night of the race. The ridge trapped the rest of the fleet north of the fresher breeze above the Gulf Stream, but Comanche cut the corner ahead of the ridge.

“When we escaped,” Read said, “all of a sudden the hard part was over. The boat did its job.”

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