Boats big and small to be auctioned

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The hull of a British yacht which cost $6.5 million to build and was abandoned in the North Atlantic during testing for a round-the-world race, is to be sold off on eBay.

The Team Philips catamaran was preparing to take part in The Race, a round-the-world sailing contest that started in Barcelona, when it began to break up during a freak storm in the Atlantic in December 2000. The crew were forced to abandon the vessel, which then came apart in the rough seas.

The hull is one of the few parts of the catamaran to have been salvaged and skipper Pete Goss has given his blessing to the sale to raise money for the disaster relief charity, ShelterBox.

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Meanwhile, back in the United States, Marine Industries Unlimited, producer of the South Florida Boat Show, is sponsoring a public boat auction March 27 in Dania Beach, Fla.

The Pompano Beach, Fla.-based group held its first auction in November and said the success of the event made it add a second one.

The first auction featured everything from personal watercraft to 40-foot performance boats. Inventory came from banks, credit unions, dealer consignments and private individuals.

"It was a great way to move product. There are so many good boats that people have forgotten about and this is a great way to put them back in the spotlight," organizer Brad Michael said in a statement.

"If the boat is not currently produced, people aren't searching for them," he added. "Take, for example, Stratos Offshore or Sea Pro. They are both good boats, but are no longer in production. We also had some individual short sales, and it was great to get the burden off those individuals' balance sheets and help the banks out as well without them having to go through the repo process."

A preview and mechanical inspection is set for March 26.

Contact Michael at (954) 270-2187 or click here for information.