Fatality in Cape to Rio Race

Published on January 5th, 2014

(January 5, 2014) – Thirty-six yachts cast off from Cape Town on January 4 for the 3300nm Cape to Rio Race, with teams representing Angola, Australia, Croatia, Germany, Great Britain, India, Italy and South Africa. But the slogging has not come easy.

The race started benignly enough with bright sunshine and 10 knots of breeze, however, as expected a low pressure system, emanating from the South Atlantic, reached the fleet on the first night. With reports of 40 to 60 knts of wind and swells of 6 metres, many yachts experienced difficulties with the conditions.

This report was posted at 20:00 SAST…

BILLE (Bavaria 54) reported earlier today mainsail problems and that they were proceeding back to Cape Town for repairs. At 15:00 a report was received that the yacht was dismasted and there were a number of serious injuries on board, including one fatality.

BLACK CAT (Didi 38) has reported a broken rudder and is proceeding back to Cape Town, one crew has a sprained ankle and all are well.

PEEKAY (Beneteau 51) have reported sail problems and are proceeding to Saldanha Bay, crew all well.

EXPLORA (Open 60)have reported engine flooded but all well and will attend to the problem in calmer conditions.

ISLA (Wilderness) has reported both engines inoperable, but generator working.

AVA (Miura) reported in this morning saying that they were having battery power problems. At 16:18 an EPIRB was activated from Ava and but there has been no communication from this vessel since then. Marine Rescue Coordination Centre has activated all agencies even though the yacht appears on course from the tracking system.

DO DO (Fortuna 37) reported in at 19:30 this evening to say that they have lost steering and engine power but are hove to and will do repairs to resume racing.

The naval frigate, Islandwana, has been mustered with medical crew and will be departing this evening to attend to yacht BIlle and Ava.

Information to be posted on the race website as it becomes available.

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