Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, most sporting events have been cancelled. However, the Royal Naval Sailing Association’s annual Single Handed Yacht Race did take place on 06 Jun 2020 in partnership with the West Vancouver Yacht Club, normally racing from Vancouver to Nanaimo and return.
This year’s race was shortened with strict personal safety in mind.
The Delta Lifeboat” has served as safety vessel for the race for 42 years and this year’s assistance was given to a 38′ yacht that suffered a rigging malfunction. The sock for the spinnaker got stuck at the top of the mast and it was impossible to contain or lower the spinnaker.
The Lifeboat launched her RHIB and two crew members transferred to the yacht to assist the lone skipper. With no other option left to resolve the situation, they winched him up to the masthead to effect repairs.
On completion, the RHIB returned to the Lifeboat. The yacht retired from the race and returned to harbour under power.
The Lifeboat continued to follow the race back to Point Gray to ensure all participants were safe.
The race over, transit was made back to the Ladner Lifeboat Station ending a 12-hour deployment.
Owing to the current situation the crew was restricted to 5 members and safety protocols were in place.
The day’s weather had been variable starting with heavy rain, thunder and lightning, and winds from 10-20 knots. It cleared later to sunshine and pleasant 10-knot wind.
Even with all the restrictions and the shortened course, 50 yachts enjoyed a fantastic race and the Delta Lifeboat crew proved their worth. “BZ”.