Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht Race - Frantic’s skipper injured

The crew of Frantic in last years Lord Howe Island Race - Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht Race 2011
Rob Cruse
Hempel 38th Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht Race is a 414 nautical mile race across the northern Tasman Sea. Michael Martin, the owner/skipper of the Lake Macquarie Yacht Club entrant, Frantic, is recuperating on Lord Howe Island after dislocating his shoulder and injuring his knee in a fall during the race.

Martin, who fell during heavy seas, was treated by medical staff on the island after the yacht completed the race on Monday evening.

'He is still rather sore, but is resting easily,' race director Bob Swan said today just before the crews of the eight yachts gathered for the trophy presentation on Lord Howe Island.

'Apparently conditions out there in the Tasman Sea were boisterous at times and Mick had a heavy fall. They crew strapped his shoulder and once ashore he received immediate medical treatment.'

Swan said the line honours winner The Stick had had mostly north-easterly headwinds racing across the Tasman, but the southerly front on Monday had given the tailenders a fast spinnaker ride to the finish.

'They got up to 30 knots but there was no rig or sail damage reported, although I believe another crew member suffered a possible fractured wrist.

'Polaris of Belmont, the last boat to finish, came in one-and-a-half days quicker than she did last year, only 20 hours slower than The Stick.'

Swan said the strong southerly had meant that it was too rough to get the three last boats into the lagoon. 'We had to send them to the eastern (lee) side of the island to anchor offshore, but the crew of HMAS Bundaberg, which had changed course to Lord Howe Island because of a medical problem on board, came to our help and ferried the crews ashore at Ned’s Beach.

'We left two crew on board each yacht, but the others were most grateful to the navy for getting them ashore after the race,' Swan added.

The race director also announced that the club team trophy had been won by the Cruising Yacht Club team of Wild Oats (Roger Hickman) and Quetzalcoatl (Antony Sweetapple) which had won the IRC and PHS division respectively.

'But we also presented a team trophy to HMAS Bundaberg for the team effort in coming to our assistance in getting crew ashore,' Swan added.