Skip to main content

Newport Ensenada Race Accident Leaves 3 Dead, 1 Missing

An accident off the coast of California during the Lexus Newport to Ensenada Yacht Race left three crewmembers of Aegean dead and one missing, the first fatalities in the race’s history.

An accident off the coast of California during the Lexus Newport to Ensenada Yacht Race left three crewmembers of Aegean dead and one missing, the first fatalities in the race’s history.

According to a press release from the Newport Ocean Sailing Association (NOSA), the boat’s tracking signal disappeared around 0130 on April 28. Several hours later, the US Coast Guard discovered the boat’s splintered remains.

News sources say Aegean appears to have collided with a much larger vessel. The race, which runs 125 miles from Newport Beach, CA, to Ensenada, Mexico, runs overnight and passes through shipping lanes, making the scenario highly possible.

But new information has come to light that posits a different theory about the cause of the accident. GPS tracking information from Aegean suggests that the vessel landed on the Coronado Islands. A boat hitting the sheer cliffs of North Coronado Island, with no beaches to reduce its speed, could cause great damage to the vessel. While progress has been made, officials are still investigating what led to the four crewmembers' deaths.

The sailors involved were identified as William Reed Johnson Jr., 57, from Torrance, CA; Joseph Lester Stewart, 64, from Bradenton, FL; and Kevin Eric Rudolph, 53 from Manhattan Beach, CA. Theo Mavromatis, 49, is still missing.

Photo by the US Coast Guard

Related

promo-2048x

Just Launched Mid-sized Cruisers

With so many manufacturers dreaming up bigger production boats, more and more mid-sized cruisers fall on the smaller end of their lines. However, “smaller” does not mean less, and the tricks for optimizing larger models have helped with squeezing more enjoyment into less LOA. As ...read more

05-DSC_0638

Charter: Lake Tahoe

A sail on Lake Tahoe has been on my bucket list since the day I first laid eyes on it, and come hell or high water, I decided I was going to someday charter a boat there. North America’s largest and deepest alpine lake, Tahoe sits at 6,225ft above sea level and straddles the ...read more

East-River-Rapids

Escape from New York Part 1

I was never supposed to take my boat through New York City. After getting sucked backward through the Cape Cod Canal on my way south from Maine, when the speed of the current exceeded the maximum speed of my little electric auxiliary, I wanted nothing to do with Hell Gate and ...read more

LEAD-Celeste-in-the-Tuamotu

A Watermaker Upgrade

As a classic-boat sailor, I’ve long held that simpler is the better. I still think this is true: a simpler boat is cheaper, she has less gadgets to break down and there’s a certain satisfaction in knowing you’re able to handle a bit of discomfort. Thus, for a long time, I sailed ...read more

01-LEAD-IDECsport_180919_032

Sailing Speed Records

Although the 1903 defender of the America’s Cup, Reliance, was deemed a “racing freak”—the boat pushed design rules to their limit and couldn’t be beaten, at least in very specific conditions—designer Nat Herreshoff was nonetheless onto something. A century later, purpose-built ...read more

BVIFeetup

Chartering with Non-sailors

Three tips on managing the madness First-time charterers and first-time sailors aren’t at all the same thing. One group may struggle with beginner chartering issues, like sailing a multihull, catching a mooring or dealing with base personnel. For the other group, though, ...read more

AdobeStock_455372159

A Gulf Stream Crossing at Night

Even the dome of light glowing above the city behind us had disappeared as if swallowed in a gulp by Noah’s whale. The moon was absent. Not a star twinkled overhead. The night was so dark we could have been floating in a pot of black ink. The only artificial lights to be seen ...read more

00-Lead-549215sJL2uLEa

Summer Sailing Programs

Every year, countless parents find themselves navigating the do’s and don’ts of enrolling their children in a summer learn-to-sail program for the first time. While the prospect of getting your kid on the water is exciting, as a sailing camp program director, there are a lot of ...read more