Brand new race yacht capsizes after keel catastrophe

Fourteen yachtsmen were rescued by helicopter from the hull of brand new 55ft yachtBounderafter it capsized with severe keel problems in a stormy Solent this Saturday, 30 June.

The Juan Kouyoumdjian-designed yacht was test sailing off St Catherine’s Point Lighthouse at 1330hrs when the inversion happened, tumbling all the crew in the water in a matter of seconds. The crew, who were all wearing lifejackets, helped each other onto the upturned hull and Skipper Anthony Haines made a ‘999’ call to Solent Coastguard from his mobile phone, which was zip-locked in a waterproof casing.

The coastguard rescue helicopter Whiskey Bravo was scrambled and airlifted the crew members to its base at Lee-on-the-Solent, Hants, approximately 30 minutes later. None of the casualties required medical attention as they showed no signs of hypothermia.

The crew are now looking into options to salvage the yacht. Bounder, built by Goetz Custom Yachts in Rhode Island and owned by former RORC Commodore Chris Little,Bounderwas launched earlier this year. Her first major planned event was to be the Rolex Fastnet Race this August.

Picture: Bounder in happier times. Courtesy of Goetz Yachts.