That’s double gold medalist Shirley Robertson and her CNN Mainsail producer offering the first of many apologies to top US mothie and Luna Rossa Challenge team member Bora Gulari (Detroit, Michigan) after her media boat collided with his foiling moth. Shirley’s media boat destroyed the rudder gantry of Bora’s Mach 2 during the carnage-filled pre-start to an aborted race yesterday while the CNN crew were facing the other way; they were filming a pre-start lineup with Nathan Outerridge and Paul Goodison.
CNN took Bora’s foils to shore and then left him when help came along; Bora went into survival mode, with a club rescue RIB nearly running him over in an attempted recovery in wind-against-tide nastiness. Finally, the ETNZ rescue boat came over and helped the American and his boat get to shore (along with helping about a dozen others, while event rescue boats milled about in some confusion).
While CNN may be used to being ridiculed, we’re pretty disappointed in Robertson, who we know is a passionate, experienced sailor. Given how lightly the responsible RIB got off (no injuries to Bora), Shirley would have certainly won our respect had she stood up and taken responsibility and assuring Bora that she would do what it took to get his boat back up to snuff. Instead, she tried to divert blame from her, implying that the sailboat ran into her powerboat. We understand that lawyers have made honesty something of a relic, but we would hope Shirley knows better. Apparently not.
In contrast, Regatta Chair Peter Osbourne and the entire SSCBC team have been transparent and communicative, and this morning, we got a phone call assuring us that Bora would not be out of pocket for a penny. That’s how it should be done. Top photo credit to Petey Crawford, rescue shot to Sander Van Der Borch.
Racing is cancelled for Wednesday, with 30-40 knots on Port Philip Bay. Join us right here on Sailing Anarchy for all the live video action on Thursday and Friday as the Worlds Finals is packed into 2 short days.