Last week we brought you the story of the keel falling off the J/80 Heat Wave during the double handed Farallones race in ‘Frisco. Here is part three of the complete and exclusive story from crew David Servais.
Part three: The Realization
As Dave and I looked at each other a horrifying idea was coming over both of us. The keel was gone, the boat wasn’t coming back up, and even worse, it might be sinking!
We were both still tethered on, to what was now the underside of the boat. Fortunately I was on my long tether, which is about 10 feet. Dave was on his short one and was getting pulled under with every wave.
He pulled a knife out of his pocket and cut his tether away. He then handed me the knife.
I almost cut my tether right away, but as I saw that the boat seemed to be floating, and that I had enough length to still get on it, I decided it was probably safer to stay attached and risk getting dragged under if the boat went down, then to cut away and risk getting washed away from the boat. I carefully folded the knife and put it in my pocket for safe keeping.