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Phocea (ex Club Mediterranée) catches fire and sinks off Malaysia.

jwilson

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Those younger may not know that this 230+ foot yacht was built as a singlehander racer for Alain Colas for the 1976 OSTAR transatlantic race: fortunately it came 5th and did not win or we might have had even bigger singlehanders a few years later. In 1976, pre modern electronics, the idea a a singlehander asleep on a 230 ft yacht at 20 knots in the Atlantic was so clearly dangerous that they changed the rules for future races. If it had run down as trawler or other smaller vessel ......

Eric Tabarly beat Colas in a 73 ft monohull, but a 32 ft multihull came a very close third and from them on multihulls were the go-to boats for ocean races.
 

Kukri

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Colas was lost at sea with, iirc, one of Tabarly’s Pen Duicks -the trimaran one - taking part in a early Route du Rhum.

(edited: Pen Duick IV, the first Route du Rhum, 1978).

Not much value left in that, now.

A case for Pyrojames, methinks.
 
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Bajansailor

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27 Dec 2004
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Didn't Club Med come in 2nd?

Even so, poor Alain Colas was really shown up by the wee multihull who sailed into Newport soon after Club Med - she was a 31' Val Trimaran 'The Third Turtle', designed by the legendary Dick Newick, and sailed by Mike Birch.
Third Turtle, a Trimaran, Tons Class in Atlantic Race (Published 1976)

https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/val-31

Val trimaran - Third Turtle.jpg

Some more info and photos of Phocea on her Marinetraffic page - I guess that she had been 'out of range' recently (ie prior to the fire), as Marinetraffic has not heard from her since the 11th February.
PHOCEA (Sailing Vessel) Registered in St Vincent Grenadines - Vessel details, Current position and Voyage information - IMO 8942797, MMSI 376944000, Call Sign J8Y4739
 
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Ningaloo

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Those younger may not know that this 230+ foot yacht was built as a singlehander racer for Alain Colas for the 1976 OSTAR transatlantic race: fortunately it came 5th and did not win or we might have had even bigger singlehanders a few years later. In 1976, pre modern electronics, the idea a a singlehander asleep on a 230 ft yacht at 20 knots in the Atlantic was so clearly dangerous that they changed the rules for future races. If it had run down as trawler or other smaller vessel ......

Eric Tabarly beat Colas in a 73 ft monohull, but a 32 ft multihull came a very close third and from them on multihulls were the go-to boats for ocean races.
I still remember the excitement of reading the detailed reports in The Observer each Sunday. I was a teenage and followed the OSTAR throughout the 70's, never imagining that I would ever own a boat capable of ocean passages.
Pity the UK press is so infatuated with soccer that major sailing events (AC, VG, JV) barely get a mention now.
 

Frogmogman

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26 Aug 2012
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Didn't Club Med come in 2nd ?
you remember correctly; Club Med did cross the line second, but was awarded a penalty for accepting assistance when he put into Newfoundland for repairs, so ended up with 5th place.

The weather systems of the 1976 event were brutal, so it was an edition full of incident and drama, with several competitors abandoning their boats (including Tony Bullimore IIRC)

The really tragic thing for which I shall always remember the 76 Ostar was poor Mike McMullen, who witnessed the accidental electrocution of his wife Lizzie, preparing his Trimaran “three cheers” two days before the race. Mike then disappeared in the race, presumed lost in a storm. Mike was a former Royal Marine Commando, and tough as old boots, but the thought of setting off on such a tough event on your own so soon after such a tragic experience doesn’t bear thinking about.

it was also the edition in which Claire Francis sailed Roberson’s Golly into 13th place, beating the women’s record by 3 days. That performance, her participation in the 1977 Whitbread with her Swan 65 ADC Accutrac, and the excellent books she wrote about the two events surely helped to inspire many of the female offshore sailors who came after.
 

Kukri

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I’d had a spin in “Three Cheers”. In 1974, when Mike was preparing for the Round Britain Race. In which she came second. She impressed me no end. Small, with light gear, she went faster than anything have sailed in before or since. And she was comfortable! The only reason I was there was because Mike had asked his fellow RCC member Bill Tilman along for a spin and room had been found for me.

In September 1976 a ship reported sighting the upside down hull of a yellow trimaran, and three years later parts of her were found washed up in Iceland.

It seems reasonable to assume that she capsized.3284FF40-9711-45F7-8B4F-16C7741B8E1E.png
 
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