British boat Santa Ana T-bones King of Spain's boat Bribon 22/9/06

The weather mark is a busy place in a TP52 regatta. With 21 boats racing in
the last event of the 2006 Breitling Medcup the standard of sailing is high
and the margins between boats slim. Sometimes on the wrong side of slim as
Stuart Robinson and his crew discovered when they T-boned the King of
Spain’s boat Bribon at the first weather mark.

The clash forced both boats to retire immediately, both suffering extensive
damage, Santa Ana, (Robinson’s boat formerly known as Stay Calm), with a
gaping hole where the slender plumb bow once was and Bribon with a deep
split from the gunwale down to just above the waterline amidships – a
serious blow.

The collision happened just metres from the weather mark. As Bribon
approached on starboard, Santa Ana came in on port, tried to bear away but
ended up burying its bow in the port side of Bribon.

“We were approaching the second windward mark on port tack and I felt that
we could get past Bribon who was to starboard of us,” said Santa Ana’s
tactician Adrian Stead. “As we got closer we tried to bear away behind them
but we slowed up and I was unable to give anyone enough warning. I tried to
avoid the collision by tacking up but was unable to. We were completely at

Fortunately no-one was hurt in the incident.

Elsewhere on the race course, Peter de Ridder’s Mutua Madrileña/ Mean
Machine took another step towards an overall win for the season. De Ridder
and his crew have performed consistently throughout the season and will be
popular winners in this highly competitive fleet.

Fred and Steve Howe’s Warpath, helmed by Dean Barker looked set to take
second for the season, while the scrap for third looked likely to go all the
way to the wire. Eamon Connelly’s Siemens (ex-Patches), helmed by Ian
Walker, Vincente Tirado’s Caixa Galicia and John Cook’s Cristabella all
turning in good races at the front of the fleet on the penultimate day of
the event.