Booth injured in Texel Race

Tornado team wipe out in 25 knot pitchpole

Saturday June 15th 2002, Author: Simon Keijzer, Location: United Kingdom
Mitch BoothThe EDS Sailing Team crewed by Mitch Booth and Herbert Dercksen had to abandon the Round Texel race after the boat pitchpoled at full speed off the North point of the island. Mitch Booth (right) was seriously injured when he hit the daggerboard. The Australian Tornado veteran could hardly move and was in great pain.

Booth was taken away from the scene by a rescue boat and then was taken by ambulance to Den Helder. Serious back or hip problems were feared but luckily Booth only had severe bruises. Nothing was broken or seriously damaged. Booth has to stay in the hospital for further observation and also as he can hardly move.

The team was lying in fifth position at the time of the dramatic accident. At full speed they lost control of the boat. Herbert Dercksen explained what happened: "We were doing some 25 knots when the leeward hull dug in and we flipped over forward. Mitch was on the windward hull and I was on the trapeze. Mitch rammed into the dagger board as I was catapulted out of the boat. Very sad and sorry for Mitch but I am also very relieved that it is nothing serious. It
looked bad on the water."

The EDS Sailing Team competed in the Round Texel as part of the training for their Tornado campaign for the Athens Olympics in 2004. Round Texel is the biggest cat race with some 800 boats competing. Booth and Dercksen sailed a Hobie Fox (Formule 18).

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