Tough conditions in the first twenty-four-hours of the Andrews Institute Pensacola a la Habana race 2015 have ensued in four of the twenty-two starters needing to call it a day.
‘Surf Rider’, the home-made catamaran as well as Island Packet 27 ‘Island Sun’ came back to Pensacola Bay Saturday later this afternoon. ‘Makani U’l’, a Beneteau 40, went through damage to her jib halyard as well as roller-furler system and it is going to St. Petersburg, Florida for some repairs. ‘Midnight Sun II’, a Hunter 42, was dismasted and was taken back to Pensacola Yacht Club (PYC) by 8:30 AM CST.
Midnight Sun II’s captain Neil Davies said that they had been sailing in 22-25 kts of wind via five to seven foot seas. The highest wind they had watched was around thirty kts in gusts. At the night of the Halloween, the wind had just begun to drop off. It was now blowing around sixteen kts and the seas were settling.
He was below and heard it pop and crash. The mast went over the port side as well as the boom hit on the arch on the cockpit. They believe that the head stay broke at the mast-top, but they threw away the mast to protect the hull so they could not confirm that. Thanks to the boom arch they were all unhurt, and will be back to practising their manouvres for with a slightly more sedate Yacht Charter in Greece!
Commodore Ron Bray said that they might be a day behind. But they would be there for the trophy presentation and they might win the ‘rally’ part of the meet.” The ‘Midnight Sun’ crew now aboard ‘Trasea’ might too win the party.