LendingClub founder Renaud Laplanche competes as hard on water as he does in business.
So when the lifelong sailor fell two hours short of a transpacific record in 2013, racing a 73-foot trimaran from southern California to Honolulu in five days and 11 hours, he did what any fanatic would do.
"We decided to get a bigger boat for 2015," Laplanche told an audience at the San Francisco Yacht Club on Wednesday.
The Lending Club 2 is 105-feet long and 73-feet wide, with a mast height that reaches about 140 feet. At its fastest, the yacht can top 43 knots, or close to 50 miles per hour.
Starting July 18, Laplanche's nine-person crew will again take aim at the record when it begins the 2015 Transpacific Yacht Race (Transpac). To gear up for the event, Laplanche and co-skipper Ryan Breymaier are sailing the Lending Club 2 in the San Francisco Bay, bringing with them employees, customers, investors, reporters and school children who had never before been on a boat.
Wednesday's tour through the Bay, under the Golden Gate Bridge and alongside Alcatraz Island, reached speeds topping 37 knots. Guests got to experience sharp turns, big waves and plenty of sliding and tumbling as the yacht lifted onto its edges.