Les Crane on panel studying death of Newport Race sailor
Veteran Bermuda sailor Les Crane has been appointed to a panel tasked with examining the death of a yacht captain in last month’s Newport to Bermuda Race.
Mr Crane, a former commodore of the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, was put on the panel along with five other sailing experts after the race’s organising committee asked US Sailing to “independently review the matter to determine what took place and what safety lessons might be learnt”.
The committee was formed after the death of experienced blue water sailor and long-time US Sailing member Colin Golder, who was swept overboard during the Race. Mr Golder, from New Jersey, was the owner of the 42ft Morgan of Marietta, which returned to the US with his body.
A second crew member was also said to have been swept overboard, but was rescued.
A statement from US Sailing said: “The panel looks to fact-find on contributing factors including, weather conditions, crew experience, safety regulations and more to produce a chronology of the causative events and quantitative lessons learned to help make the sport of offshore racing safer.
“US Sailing estimates the report will be completed in the fall.”
The other panellists are: Greg Miarecki, chairman, who has raced and overseen hundreds of distance races on Lake Michagan; Ed Cesare, a veteran of 18 Bermuda Races and three transatlantic races; Andrew Clouston, US Sailing’s senior vice-president of programmes and services and a former chief operating officer of Yachting New Zealand; Matt Gallagher, chair of the offshore and technology division of US Sailing; and Captain Jonathan Kabak, chief executive officer of Oliver Hazard Perry Rhode Island and Master of the SSV Oliver Hazard Perry, a sail training vessel.