“Talking Sailing” From My Archives. Corsair Hits A Whale

by Richard Crockett

Position reports today show that ‘Ocean Spirit ‘was leading the fleet with ‘Graybeard’ in second. On handicap ‘Hamburg VII’ was the leader with ‘Albatross II’ in second spot. This is a remarkable turn-around for ‘Albatross II’ after their mast mishap forced them to effect repairs in the shelter of Robben Island within hours of the start. That’s a great recovery.

Bruce Dalling has brought ‘Jakaranda’ into Cape Town, and once repairs are complete he will rejoin the race. In an article below he recounts first-hand what happened.

‘Stormkaap’ is also expected to depart from Port Nolloth today as her repairs are almost complete.

Lest we forget, communications with yachts 50 years ago were via Marine SSB radio, and were “iffy” to say the least. So caught up in the excitement of the race is the public who are sending Telegrams (what’s a Telegram Dad!) thick and fast to the yachts. Sadly due to the volume of Telegrams only urgent ones are being “delivered”. Today one can have almost instant coms with a vessel anywhere in the world via Satellite Phone.

Lastly, ‘Corsair’ hit a whale – and being a stout heavily built vessel the whale appeared to come off second-best!

“Race Yacht Hits Whale – No Damage”.  The Cape Town Yacht ‘Corsair’ hit a whale about 70 miles south of us this morning, leaving the sea stained with blood.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000283 – OCR

“Albatros Leaps Ahead”. While ‘Graybeard’ and ‘Ocean Spirit’ retain the top two positions according to the latest Cape-to-Rio race reports, ‘Albatros’ and ‘Sprinter’ have improved their positions remarkably.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000359 – OCR

“Yachts Fan Out to Find Best Courses”. After three days of fast downwind sailing, the Cape-to-Rio yachts have begun to fan out over a vast expanse of ocean – some obviously going far north to benefit from the trade winds at their strongest.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000492 – OCR

“It’s Never Too Late to Win”. It is a basic principle of yacht racing that it is never too late to win a race. In competitive racing, belief in this principle is essential to succeed.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000493 – OCR

“Dalling Tells of Race Mishap”.  Skipper Bruce Dalling said in Cape Town today that his yacht, ‘Jakaranda’, forced back with a broken rudder, might be repaired in two days and that it could still beat half the Cape-to-Rio fleet.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000301 – OCR

“Stormkaap to Go on – Could Sail Today”. ‘Stormkaap’ is expected to sail from Port Nolloth some time this afternoon as repairs to the yacht’s skeg and rudder are almost completed.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000329 – OCR

“Only Urgent Telegrams for Rio Yachts”. Well-wishers and anxious or sympathetic friends have been handing in telegrams all over the country for transmission to yachts competing in the Cape-to-Rio race, but these cannot be delivered.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000488 – OCR

“Organizers of Rio Race Are Grateful”. The organizers of the Cape-to-Rio race, in a statement issued yesterday by Mr. Tom Unite, the executive secretary, thank the many hundreds of individuals and organizations who helped to make the event a spectacular success.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Dave Elcock Collection -000489 – OCR

“Position Reports”.
READ MORE HERE:  1971 01 20 – Rio 1971 – Frans Loots Collection – 001626_Redacted