Sailracers might have hit Mexican island


An online tracking system shows that a vessel identified as the Aegean struck a jagged island, possibly debunking the theory that the 37-foot sailboat was smashed by an oncoming tanker or freighter.

The boat, one of more than 200 competing in the annual Newport (Calif.)-to-Ensenada (Mexico) race, was destroyed Saturday off the Mexican coastline. All four crewmembers were lost. Authorities are still searching for one of the bodies.

Experienced sailors and competitors in the yachting competition told the Los Angeles Times Tuesday that they’d been made aware of a GPS-based tracking system that shows the Aegean running aground on a far end of North Coronado Island at 1:36 a.m. Saturday, the time that sponsors of the race said the accident occurred.

The islands are about 15 miles south of San Diego Bay.

Coast Guard Lt. Sean Groark said investigators are aware of the tracking map, but could not attest to its accuracy because it is commercially operated.

The destruction of the Aegean remains under investigation.