James Boyd Photography / www.thedailysail.com

Another Mini abandonment

Australian Scott Cavanough out of the race after dismasting

Tuesday October 25th 2011, Author: Veronique Largeau, Location: none selected


Scott Cavanough, skipper of 797 - brainchild.org.au was forced to abandon his 2010 Brett Bakewell-White designed prototype while mid-Atlantic in the Mini Transat. The boat dismasted following a collision with a tanker causing severe damage to her bow.

Cavanough set up a jury mast and four hours after the incident was back sailing again, but the Australian was forced to abandon his boat and climb on board the escort boat, Pen Ar Clos, this morning.

Cavanough subsequently explained the reasons for leaving his boat. "My situation was worsening. The mast, before it broke, had caused the bow to break aft of the crash bulkhead and after a squall it was threatening to competely break off. Without a bow and a inner forestay point, sailing 1000nm to land with still 600nm to get through the Doldrums would have been impossible. Being on a vessel that was no longer sea worthy would have put my life at risk." 

Cavanough followed the standard safety procedure, triggering his EPIRB indicating that he had a technical problem and that he was requesting assistance. Yesterday, the race director asked one of the seven escort boats, Pen Ar Clos, to motor through the night at high speed, reaching the Australian sailor early this morning.

American Proto sailor Emma Creighton on 574 Pocket Rocket kept a watch on Cavanough all night, putting her race on hold as a satisfactory outcome for Cavanough's dismasting. On the arrival of the escort boat, Creighton set sail again this morning.

Scott will stay aboard the Pen Ar Clos escort boat until she reaches Brazil. 

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