Monday, October 14, 2013

The remains of Great American I, the trimaran that saved our friends Rich Wilson and Steve Pettengill

by Larry - preparing to leave Stanley

I sent out an alert to many friends about following our adventure and got back from Rich Wilson, who is preparing for his second Vendee Globe, round the world, non-stop race in his mid-60's the following email before we left the internet cafe:

You may or may not know that our 60' trimaran Great American, that was lost in the double somersaulting capsize 400 nm west of Cape Horn on November 22, 1990, and then drifted around the Horn after Steve Pettengill and I were taken off by the giant refrigerated containership New Zealand Pacific (their logbook read swells of 15 meters, sea train on top of 5 meter, 85 knots of wind), ended up on the west coast of South Georgia Island about 20-25 miles south of where Shackleton landed. Should you see her, tell her thanks for being strong enough to not break up in those 2 capsizes. She was found a year or so later by someone cruising who said she'd been washed up over the rocks, bottom ripped out. This was confirmed by Tim and Pauline Carr, who lived on their boat in S. Georgia for 7 years I think and wrote Antarctic Oasis. I never wanted to see her in that state so never visited. She was a great boat.

We all remember his adventure and stories that he lived to tell so many about. Rich, I asked Magnus about it and he said he did see your Great American I exactly where you said when he was sailing past with a kayaking expedition last year. Center hull of the trimaran was still there on the rocks 23 years later. Nothing degrades inside the Convergence Zone! He'll give her a good word from you next time he goes by. We'll probably be too far north.


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