Two airflited after yacht capsizes in Dún Laoghaire race

Saturday 22 June 2013 22.23
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The Spindrift yacht was carrying a crew of ten when it overturned in Dún Laoghaire harbour
The Spindrift yacht was carrying a crew of ten when it overturned in Dún Laoghaire harbour
Race organisers cancelled today's leg of the race
Race organisers cancelled today's leg of the race
The Spindrift racing yacht is steered by French sailor, Yann Guichard
The Spindrift racing yacht is steered by French sailor, Yann Guichard

Two French crew members have been airlifted from an overturned yacht in Dún Laoghaire harbour.

The trimaran with ten people on board capsized in rough seas.

The Spindrift vessel was taking part in the Route des Princes international round-Europe race.

The yacht capsized in a violent gust shortly after the start of the race at 3pm and all of the crew were thrown into the water.

The yacht’s skipper, Yann Guichard and his brother were airlifted from the vessel and taken to Tallaght hospital where Jacques Guichard was treated for a fractured pelvis.

The skipper said, "I was unable to do anything at the helm, the boat was turned over with a single blow.

"We let out the staysail immediately, but it was too late as it all happened in a split second.”

Mr Guichard explained; "We started a bit below and behind the fleet and found ourselves slightly in a wind shadow. When our rivals had moved away we had a sudden gust literally flatten us." 

Weather conditions on the water when the capsize occurred were 20 knots with strong gusts.

Race organisers cancelled the race and the trimaran was taken under slow tow into Dún Laoghaire harbour. 

The Route de Princes race left Valencia earlier this month and stopped in Lisbon before arriving in Dublin this week.

The Irish Coast Guard, RNLI and emergency services all attended the incident.