Whilst some superyachts are arriving by ship, others have problems with crowded stern-to mooring

Thursday, 9 December 1999

Having crossed the Pacific under our own power, I couldn’t help but notice a few superyachts arriving in Auckland earlier this week, having taken a distinctly easier route.

With a combined value of over ’70 million, these eight motor yachts appeared on the back of Super Servant 3, the United Yacht Transporter, after a three-week crossing from Florida. To unload its precious cargo, the carrier flooded its deck and the yachts motored off into their waiting berths in the Cup Village marina.

The new arrivals, including ‘Ubiquitous’, ‘Affinity’, ‘Sovereign Lady’ and the Gibraltar registered ‘Findings’, have joined the other giant motor yachts, ‘Itasca’ and ‘Double Haven’, leaving little room for latecomers.

Despite help from the marina boat boys, the Mediterranean-style berthing is becoming increasingly difficult. The first to register a serious battle scar was superyacht Georgia, on returning from her second day’s sailing. As the crew backed her into the berth, the clutch failed to disengage, driving her into the pontoon at six knots leaving a large chunk missing from the rudder. Looking at the web of mooring lines and piles, I can’t help wondering whether further mishap is not just around the corner.