Capsized Boats that Would Not Sink

Author:
Publish date:
Social count:
85

At 0500 on the stormy morning of December 2, 2010, the Multi50 trimaran Region Aquitaine-Port Medoc, en route from Guadeloupe to France, was hit by a violent squall and capsized in mid-Atlantic, 1,000 miles from land.

Skipper Lalou Rocayrol and his crew were soon rescued by a passing freighter and the boat was never seen again—not until December 5 last year, when a Reliance Yacht Management crew delivering a boat from Europe to the Caribbean sailed within spitting distance of the upturned tri. Captain Hannah Golebiewska photographed the wreck and passed its position on to the authorities.

A delivery crew spotted this upturned racing trimaran in mid-Atlantic, five years after it capsized en route to France

A delivery crew spotted this upturned racing trimaran in mid-Atlantic, five years after it capsized en route to France

The trimaran was just one of a spate of re-appearances of missing sailboats. In January, the capsized hull of a Leopard 44 catamaran was found drifting off the east coast of South Africa. It and its three crew had disappeared in the Indian Ocean in February 2015 on a delivery voyage from South Africa to a Sunsail base in Thailand. The Agulhas current had carried it south from its last reported position on the outskirts of a tropical cyclone.

Sadly, the catamaran broke loose in heavy seas as it was being towed into port and at time of writing had not been seen again, denying the families of the three crewmembers some much-needed closure.

Hugo Boss in 2006, shortly before she was abandoned;  she was found on a Chilean beach nine years later

Hugo Boss in 2006, shortly before she was abandoned; she was found on a Chilean beach nine years later

In late February, a kayaker discovered the remains of the IMOCA 60 Hugo Boss washed up on a beach on the Chilean coast, nine years after it was abandoned during the 2005-06 Velux 5 Oceans race when its canting keel mechanism failed in a storm off South Africa. Skipper Alex Thomson was rescued by fellow competitor Mike Golding, but the boat had not been seen since. It drifted more than 10,000 miles across the bottom of the world to end up in Patagonia.[advertisement]

A racing crew found this dismasted boat off the Philippines, with her skipper’s body aboard

A racing crew found this dismasted boat off the Philippines, with her skipper’s body aboard

In late January, the most macabre discovery of them all: the crew of a boat competing in the Clipper round-the-world race boarded a dismasted, derelict Jeanneau 44 off the Philippines and discovered the mummified body of a German sailor on board, sitting at the chart table. They reported it to the U.S. Coast Guard and sailed on. A month later the hulk was found by Filipino fishermen. It was later towed to shore, where an autopsy found the solo sailor, Manfred Bajorat, had died of a heart attack. He had not been heard from for a year, though it’s not known when he died.

The wreck of this Gunboat 55 was towed into Bermuda, 13 months after it lost its rig and was abandoned

The wreck of this Gunboat 55 was towed into Bermuda, 13 months after it lost its rig and was abandoned

And finally, as we were going to press, news came that the Gunboat 55 catamaran, Rainmaker, which was dismasted and abandoned off Cape Hatteras in January 2015, had been found again (she was last seen in July 2015). The hulk was spotted off Bermuda by fishermen, and was towed back into port.

Lost on a delivery from South Africa to Thailand, this cat was found more than a year later

Lost on a delivery from South Africa to Thailand, this cat was found more than a year later

May 2016

Related

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comImpeller Practice Engine raw-water pump impellers don’t last forever. Even if they are not destroyed by running the engine dry following a blockage, they still deteriorate with the years. If you’ve never ...read more

Waves1(1)

Know how: Weather 101, Basics

OverviewThe first thing to know is that “Weather 101, Basics” is a science course. Its goal is to prepare boaters for a second course launching later this year called “Weather 202, Advanced.” Taken together, these classes are designed to teach boaters to become their own weather ...read more

05-Close-reaching

Light-Air Sailing

Some of the best times aboard a cruising boat are in light airs—those quiet, relaxed sunny days with gentle sailing that just wouldn’t be the same if you were motoring. However, many cruising yachts are not set up to truly fullfill their potential in these kinds of conditions.One ...read more

VOR-BoatYard

Volvo Ocean Race: the Boatyard

The Volvo Ocean Race stopovers are a chance for sailors to rest between grueling legs of the race and for fans to enjoy seeing their favorite boats in person. Behind the scenes of the festivities, however, Nick Bice and his team of expert riggers, boatbuilders, sailmakers and ...read more

20160711_Klampe_Alu_013

Nomen: Folding Cleats

Springtime for CleatsIt’s not every day you see a new take on the humble cleat. There are two problems with these essential items: lines tend to get snagged in them when you least want them to and they attract bare toes with painful accuracy. German company Nomen, maker of the ...read more

WS-POD-600

Watt & Sea: Power Pod Hydrogenerators

Power PodHydrogenerators are an increasingly common addition to bluewater cruising boats, but for all their benefits many sailors don’t like to mount them on the transom, where they may interfere with self-steering gear or drop-down transom platforms. Instead, Watt & Sea’s new ...read more