Two days into the Transpac, the 2,225-mile Los Angeles to Honolulu race organized by the Transpacific Yacht Club, the mast of one racer came toppling down on the deck.
“Everyone on board is fine. We have secured the boat, cutting away the mast and section of the boom, and are now heading toward the L.A. area under engine,” read a July 15 report from the Gunboat 66 catamaran Phaedo. "At the time of the dismasting we were sailing under A4 at around 16 knots."
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A satellite phone interview with the team indicated that they thought the top of the mast failed first.
“We were running downwind with our large spinnaker up, and I was driving the boat and, yeah, heard it — heard an awful crack, and you know, the whole thing came down,” Phaedo owner Lloyd Thornburg said.
The nearly 80-foot carbon fiber mast landed on the starboard deck and pilothouse roof.
Without enough spar left to set a jury rig, Phaedo headed back to Los Angeles under power, making about 6 knots with about 250 miles of range in fuel. Because the boat was 500 miles into the race, fuel assistance was needed to complete the trip to shore.