Keel problems force retirement for one of the new Open 60s, Elaine Bunting reports

Will the Open 60s ever be free of canting keel problems?

Another new boat succumbed to keel mechanism failure today as Guillermo Altadill and co-skipper Jonathan McKee in the new Farr-designed Estrella Damm were forced to retire from the Rolex Fastnet Race. The reason?

“A fault in the electronics controlling the keel motors was detected, effectively easing the keel from its canted position. Both men [tried to restart] the keel control system without success.’

The press release added: ‘With some uncertainty as to the cause of the problem, the duo decided that given the strong weather forecast ahead, there was no other choice than to retire.’

Estrella Damm was still in Christchurch Bay when the fault happened, and turned round and ran back to Cowes.