Please select your home edition
Edition
Doyle Sails 2020 - Built for Adventure 728x90 TOP

Around Alone mates go to Tim Kent's aid

by Yachtracing.com on 23 Jun 2003
Tim Kent was competing in the Bermuda 1-2 race on Friday, June 20, when his keel bulb (the stabilizing force of the yacht) fell off Everest Horizontal causing the boat to flip upside down.

Kent and his companion onboard, Rick McKenna from Elm Grove, Wisconsin, were suddenly faced with the grim situation of being under water in the Atlantic Ocean with an unruly broken yacht above them and 110 miles of ocean to Bermudan land.

Kent was strapped to the yacht with a tether, which he disconnected while holding his breath and swam to the surface. In the chaos of the disastrous situation McKenna was also able to swim from inside the cabin to the surface.

They clung to the upturned hull of Everest Horizontal hoping that they could find a way to survive. The darkening sky left them in an eerie state of disrepair as the winds reached 30 knots and waves swept over them at 10-15 feet.

Kent and McKenna scrambled to climb back onboard the turtled hull and find some grip to hold them from the violent seas. Each sailor made it to a rudder and held on for their life. A wave came from the side and swept McKenna off the boat again. He swam back to board the capsized yacht and Kent begged him to hold on tighter.

As the boat capsized, with the rig and sails dipping below 90 degrees and sinking into the ocean, Kent grabbed a capsule of pyrotechnics, shot a rocket flare in the air and clutched the emergency capsule closely on his underwater voyage to the upturned hull.

He tried to grab the EPIRB as well, but water rushed in from all directions leaving him to only fight for his own air.

As both distressed sailors hugged the rudders aboard Everest Horizontal, a 50-foot racing yacht, they spotted a luminous light behind them which was clearly a large cruise ship headed their way.

Kent opened his capsule of pyrotechnics and continued to launch nine more emergency rocket flares into the dark Atlantic sky.

The Nordic Empress, a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, slowly approached the stricken sailors.

Guests onboard gathered on deck for the uncommon scene. Two officers from the ship and three crew approached Everest Horizontal in a life boat and threw out a life ring. McKenna was first to dive off the capsized yacht and swim for the ring of safety. Kent watched beneath him as water gushed through his beloved boat, sweeping his only life possessions into the sea.

Sleeping bags, jackets, food and family mementos disappeared. Kent followed McKenna, diving into the ocean for the life ring.

'I was pulled onto the lifeboat like a dead mackerel,' said Kent after the ordeal. 'I am so happy to be rescued, and at the same time it is a bittersweet occasion because my entire life just disappeared before my eyes. Everything I own in this world is on that boat.'

Kent's fellow skippers from the Around Alone race went to work.

Alan Paris of Bermuda and Brad Van Liew of America have started research to execute a salvage of Kent's boat, knowing that it is his livelihood and continuing the spirit of camaraderie only seen in the Around Alone race.

Kent, Paris and Van Liew spent September 2002 through May 2003 as rivals in the Around Alone, a brutal solo race around the globe where competitors are both at odds for position and a network of safety for each other.

At this time Paris is developing plans for an expedition boat to search for the upturned hull of Everest Horizontal. Van Liew is recruiting divers and packing his own bag to head to Bermuda and then to sea to attempt a recovery the boat.

The salvage of Everest Horizontal is uncertain at this time.

'I hope we can find her and save her,' said Kent. 'I am thankful that my friends sprung into action on my behalf. It is a costly effort and we don't know if we can find the boat and tow her to the shores of Bermuda.'

Van Liew is optimistic and ready to embark on the recovery mission. 'Tim is like family to me and I think we have no choice but to get on the water and attempt to salvage the boat for him. It will be a tough job to find her and then a tougher job to disassemble the rigging underwater and drag her to safety without severe damage.'

About Tim Kent: Tim Kent is an active 50 year old father of two daughters, and an avid sailor from Milwaukee. He has worked in educational publishing for twenty years, and has also been an auto mechanic and managed a boat business.

He has sailed actively since the age of eleven, logging miles on oceans and the Great Lakes. He has competed in single and short-handed distance races, and was first to finish and first in class in the 330 mile Chicago-to-Mackinac single-handed offshore competition.

Bitten by the solo sailing bug, Tim Kent became the driving force behind the formation of the Everest Horizontal team.

Tim Kent successfully completed the Around Alone race of 2002-3, winning a 2nd place trophy in Class II (the 40-50 foot division).
Rooster 2020 - Impact BA - FOOTERVaikobi 2021 Boots - FOOTERDoyle Sails 2020 - Pure Brilliance 728x90 BOTTOM

Related Articles

2021 SOLAS Big Boat Challenge
Whisper and Scallywag shine Whisper's impressive form continued with Overall victory in the 2021 SOLAS Big Boat Challenge, as SHK Scallywag 100 took Line Honours in a stunning showdown on Sydney Harbour.
Posted today at 6:49 am
Sir Peter Blake remembered
Bob Fisher and Sir Douglas Myers pay tribute to Sir Peter Blake on the 20th anniversary of his death December 5 marked the 20th anniversary of the death of Sir Peter Blake, in Brazil, following an armed robbery on board the Blake Expeditions yacht "Seamaster". We republish tributes from Bob Fisher and Sir Douglas Myers.
Posted today at 4:57 am
Decently Exposed
I had wanted more - quite a lot more, actually I had wanted more. Quite a lot more, actually. Ever since I had seen them it had been a bit like Kaa, the snake in The Jungle Book. You know: "Look into my eyes"
Posted on 6 Dec
2021 ILCA 6 Radial Worlds in Oman overall
Emma Plasschaert and Nik Pletikos crowned champions The 2021 ILCA 6 World Championship concluded today in Barcelo Mussanah, Oman, with Nik Pletikos of Slovenia winning the men's fleet in the last race on the last day of the competition.
Posted on 6 Dec
The IMOCA skippers getting ready to return
There is nothing like an IMOCA sailor who is stuck on land There is nothing like an IMOCA sailor who is stuck on land. Just ask Pip Hare, the British Vendée Globe finisher who did not take part in the Transat Jacques Vabre as she and her team continue preparing their new boat for next season.
Posted on 6 Dec
America's Cup: Special General Meeting cancelled
The RNZYS Special General Meeting will not go ahead after the Requisition was withdrawn on Monday The Special General Meeting requested by a group of Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron members, set down for Thursday evening, will not go ahead after the requisition was withdrawn on Monday.
Posted on 6 Dec
7 days of Zhik cracker deals
Get yourself Christmas ready! Still searching for that perfect present? Every day, for the next 7 days we will be unlocking a great new deal on a selected product. Check zhik.com each day as they unlock.
Posted on 6 Dec
75 boats complete 2021 Transat Jacques Vabre
150 sailors and 75 crews have made it to Martinique from Le Havre The 2021 Transat Jacques Vabre ended today with the very last boat, the Class40 Terre Exotique, crossing the finish line less than an hour before the cut-off time.
Posted on 6 Dec
2021 ILCA 6 Radial Worlds in Oman day 5
The quest for medals will go down to the final day A dramatic penultimate day in the 2021 ILCA 6 Worlds ensured the quest for medals will go down to the final day in both men's and women's races. After a week of low wind, today was completely different and saw many sailors show their true form.
Posted on 6 Dec
2021-22 J/70 Winter Series begins in Tampa, FL
57 teams descended on Davis Island Yacht Club Fifty-seven J/70s descended upon Davis Island Yacht Club in Tampa, FL for the start of the 2021-2022 Winter Series and the postponed 2021 J/70 Midwinter Championship.
Posted on 6 Dec