During the final minutes leading into the start of race one for the J-Class at the Superyacht Challenge Antigua regatta on March 12, a collision occurred between S/Y Svea and S/Y Topaz, a J-Class Association statement says. Two crewmembers have received medical attention. Both boats sustained damage and immediately retired from racing.
“Neither Svea nor Topaz are able to take any further part in the Antigua Superyacht Challenge regatta,” the statement says.
A video on social media shows Svea colliding and riding over the stern of Topaz, forcing someone overboard in the process. The footage was captured on board fellow challenge participant S/Y Velsheda, Boat International reports.
A hearing report released by the J-Class Association on the incident concluded that S/Y Svea “failed to keep clear as a port tack boat” and “it was not reasonably possible for S/Y Topaz to avoid the collision.”
Topaz was approaching the start line about 1 minute and 40 seconds before the start of the race, and on port, Svea was on a collision course with Topaz. The report says, “despite a last-minute turn to bear away, Svea collided with the port side of Topaz at the runner winch, causing serious damage.
When it was clear Svea was not keeping clear, Topaz luffed. Two crewmembers on Topaz were injured with one suffering four broken ribs as he was pushed overboard by Svea’s bow, according to the report. One Svea crewmember was pulled off the boat by the runner tail of Topaz but his injuries were minor.
Topaz’s port runner winch was torn off, the boom was broken, and both running back stays, mainsheet, and backstay broke under the load. Also, the port gunwale was damaged from the runner winch to the stern, and the mast was put under extreme load from the impact and will need further inspection.
Photo: screenshot from YouTube video above