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separation anxiety

joeJoe Harris has quietly been living out a 30 year old circumnavigation dream with the support and interest of a legion of fans as he sails his Class 40 Gryphon Solo 2 around the world via the great capes, but things took a wetter turn yesterday.  If you are in the Punta Del Este area and can lend a hand, get in touch with the GS2 team.  Here’s Joe’s update:
Hello all-I am writing to let people know that I discovered some water coming in to the boat from the starboard bow area yesterday. I had seen this starting after the big Northerly gale of two nights ago, but the amount of water was small and I thought it might have come through the deck hatch. But after sponging it up a few times and it coming back, I decided to pull all the gear out of the area and have a look.
I discovered a 2ft x 3ft area of delamination- that is where the inner fiberglass skin separates from the core material and the outer fiberglass skin in the hull sandwich, and the area loses its structural integrity and becomes mushy. I don’t know whether I hit an object or just came down off a wave and crashed super hard- lord knows there was enough of those- but in any event, there is flexing in the hull skin and water seeping in- so the damage is significant enough that it needs to be addressed- and cannot be repaired at sea.
So, while this sucks to have to pull off the road, as I am anxious to get home, there is no question that the boat would not make it to Newport with this damage… so time to head for shore.
Punta Del Este, Uruguay has been a stopover port for both the Around Alone and Global Ocean Races, and GS2 friends have friends- so hopefully things can get done quickly and smoothly.
I am approx. 300 miles from Punta and am monitoring the hull flexing and water ingress closely as I point the bow in that direction- but would hope to be safely in port in a couple of days.
Cheers
Joe