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Diane Safe and Sound

by Jim Allen on 5 Dec 2013
Diane Reid of One Gir’s Ocean Challenge Heather Robertson
Diane Reid arrived in Puerto Calero in the Canary Islands early Sunday morning after sailing 300 miles downwind with only her jib. In short she had broken a spreader bracket and was still having trouble with power on her boat. The bracket was the top one on the port side. The only reason the mast stayed up was because she was able to straighten the mast and pull the checkstays on causing the mast to compress the broken fitting which still had some rivets holding. But this meant that with both checkstays on she couldn’t´hoist the main. The only reason the mast didn’t fall down was that she was very fortunate with the weather and that she could do the 300 miles on one tack slightly off the wind.

Although she still had about 4-5 hours of technical stopover allowance left she had to be towed into shore at 2:00 AM so technically her time was up, but subject to review by the Race Officer.

Now in Diane’s own words here is what happened:

So, as I suspected, unfortunately the Race Officer won't let me restart. The rules are that we are only allowed 72 hours for stopovers. I ran out of time at 0730 UTC. Plus, he was quite concerned from a safety aspect. Not that I can't manage the boat, but that I would be so far behind the fleet once I put to sea and so far behind the closest support boat by three days, that he said no for safety reasons and the weather bomb that will be in our track in a few days after the highs get slurped out of the system. It is the right decision. I think if he had told me I could restart, I probably would have because I want to finish this race so much. So it was probably wise on his part to deny me the opportunity. In the meantime, I now have to figure out what and how to deal with the boat and how and where to ship it. I'm not alone. There are five of us here all trying to answer the same question. The five of us are probably going to build up the cradles and things we need to ship the boats as it will be cheaper than trying to get our cradles etc from France.

Anyway, I am fine, very frustrated and very sad but I will survive :-)

Diane’s Shore Team lead by her Campaign Manager Roger Van Vlack are working hard to find ways to get both Diane and her boat safely back from the Canary Islands, which could cost 5-10 thousand dollars.

We can all be proud of what Diane has accomplished while flying the ABYC Burgee. In the end her boat failed her, but she didn’t fail.
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