It's all damage, disaster and problems out there by the sound of it


Problems all round on the high seas today.

In the Barcelona World Race,PRBis out of the running after a mast breakage . Swiss husband and wife team Dominique Wavre and Michele Paret onTemenosare handicapped with a damaged rudder. It’s conventionally fitted on a stock, so you can’t lift it out underway.

Guillermo Altadill and Jonathan McKee onEstrella Dammblew their A2 kite and then found after a broach under a smaller spinnaker that one of their rudders had entirely broken across one side. Their rudders are transom-mounted, so they took the damaged one out and have relaminated and re-attached it, a pretty heroic effort in big seas; it took six hours.

Meanwhile in the Transat Ecover BtoB (yacht tracks shown above) hammering upwind in steep seas has been taking its toll. Marc Guillemot onSafranconfirmed today that the ram that cants his keel has broken. Yikes. Read this: “It took me an hour to insert a blocking pin into the head of the keel which was swinging around. I even gybed involuntarily during this manoeuvre and I was sent flying. I felt pretty groggy and I’ve got quite a few bruises.”

Even more worryingly, he added: “It’s a right mess down below but the keel’s still there!! I’ve called Kito de Pavant (Group Bel), not to frighten him but simply to warn him about the problem in case there’s a fault in the system given that we have the same boats.”

Yann Elies onGenerali’fessed up to some ‘sail issues’. All Loick Peyron (Gitana 80) would say was that he’d been caught out in a squall with full sail up and added cryptically: “There will be a bit of work to do on the boat over the winter.”

Dee Caffari onAvivais in fighting form, but admitted to ‘some small problems’, including a hole in the mainsail.

Then Jean-Baptiste Dejeanty (Maisonneuve) said: “I’ve got massive problems. I’m unable to use any of my headsails. It’s a right bloody mess. The solent pulled out 3 days ago and I’ve got no use of my genoa or staysail either. It was a great race until I lost a stay and narrowly avoided dismasting. I’ve got power problems too.”

Something looks like it’s up with Mike Golding onEcover, too, as Bernard Stamm has sailed by him today and he is several knots slower than everyone else. He hasn’t explained why, except to say that he’s been without autopilots since yesterday.

Busy out there!