Rothmans’ epic swamping at Sydney-Hobart ’90

rothmans-sydney-hobartNowadays, the media spectacle of sailing, between Volvo Ocean Race, America’s Cup, mast walking and bulbous sailing, is the order of the day. But adrenaline is certainly not an ingredient in recent years. Look at this photo: we are aboard the maxi “Rothmans,” at the 1990 Sydney-Hobart, under spi. The guys captained by Irish skipper Gordon Maguire (then fresh off a fourth-place finish at Whitbread) had a really rough time of it, gaveling brutally. Recalls one crew member, “After the gavage, the below deck filled with water. If we had caught another wave like that, the boat would certainly have sunk.” For the record, Rothmans won the regatta in real time but was penalized 10 percent for placing Rothmans’ branding on the spinnaker, breaking Rule 26, which syndicated on advertising on sails.




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