Today the sky wept on and off as a flotilla of AC Team tenders gathered on the site where Artemis crew Andrew "Bart" Simpson died last week when the Artemis AC72 crashed and broke apart just east of Alcatraz. Luna Rossa, Oracle Team USA, ETNZ, Artemis, several AC boats, and two big charter boats gathered to pay tribute to this father, husband, and accomplished sailor. Details about how Simpson died, will be assessed by an independent review panel consisting of:
Regatta Director Iain Murray stated, “Once we have the information, the basic facts, all the data, then we will be able to re-build the entire chain of events and start to assess why this incident resulted in a tragic loss of life,” The San Francisco Police Department is also conducting its own review.
We were aboard the schooner Bay Lady paying respects from outside of the main circle. The mood was somber and some shed tears as 20 knots of chilly Bay breeze whipped across the deck. We each dropped a flower overboard, and one gentleman made a tribute as he poured a Pacifico into the turbulent Bay chop, "Peaceful Pacific." As we motored back to the dock, the clouds broke and filtered sun warmed our faces.
RIP, Andrew "Bart" Simpson.
Sail Rev's intrepid reporter and friend Ellen Hoke snagged some epic shots of ETNZ and Luna Rossa swapping some gelcoat at the ACWS in Naples today! The bows on the 45s are pretty tough, and it'll be interesting to see what ETNZ's transom looks like! After the incident, which sent Luna Rossa to the stable, ETNZ skipper Dean Barker commented, "Normally, even if you’re in the right you avoid collisions resulting in serious damage and it doesn’t seem like they did a lot,” said Barker, a past match racing world champion. “I think it’s pretty poor to be honest. But the umpires see it the way they see it and our guys have a long night to fix the boat.”
The repair crew for the ACWS are nothing short of miracle workers, and I'm sure they'll have no problems getting the boats back on the water. Racing in Naples continues throught the weekend, and live action and recaps can be seen at here.
Skipper Max Sirena surveys the damage.
If your interested in checking out the youth sailing action live here in San Francisco for the Red Bull Youth America's Cup International trials, our friend Jack from Cup Experience has organized a spectator boat for Saturday! Beat this! Tickets are $39.50 and include lunch with a beer or soft drink, and members of the American Youth Sailing Force will be on board. If he can get away, our record-setting friend Ryan Breymaier from Maserati may come along, too.
Get on this one right now! Tickets and info are here!