Thursday, April 9, 2009

Macquarie Innovation Crashes

Just read this post by Andrew Daff on about Macquarie Innovation. Here is a copy of the post and pictures

And may have raised their record. They also crashed and damaged the boat so that was most probably it's last run ever.In 20-25 knots of WSW wind and on a rising tide, Macquarie Innovation went for broke today........ and broke. In the first run the boat looked fast and smooth with a reported top speed of 53 knots. It looked to me like they held their speed for pretty much the whole run and seemed to finish at top speed. There is every possibility that they have raised their own class C mark and may even have topped the outright world record but we won't know that until tomorrow after all the downloading and processing of data is done.They came back and went for a second run almost immediately. Conditions we getting better as the wind moved more south west to give them a better angle and filled in to, by my estimate, a steady 25 knots. The start and the first half of the run looked good but right at the end the boat slewed one way and then the other as it appeared that the skipper lost steering. The boat proceeded continue to turn downwind for 20 meters or so and then the front hull dug in causing the boat the capsize forwards. The wing hit the water and the boat stayed in it's nose with the aft hull way up in the air. The support boats were quickly on the scene but there was not much they could do but let the boat drift slowly to the lee shore sandbar. A local windsurfer, Craig Spottiswood was quickly on the scene from where he was watching at the bottom end of the course and helped the crew hold the boat in the shallow water while they worked out how to right it. After righting, they walked the boat back upwind and towed it across the channel to the base where it was dismantled and stowed. Both the crew are safe and well. The wing has some damage as it buckled on impact with the water but looking at it while they de-rigged it was hard to see.The crew pod was looking very worse for wear. It did the job it was designed to do, namely, coming apart to allow the crew to escape uninjured. It is the only part of the craft built without carbon fibre for this very reason.

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