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The Wreck of Electra

Author's note

Skipper’s preface on

The wreck of Electra

Fifty years ago this month (July 2006) as skipper of the 44-foot yawl Electra, at 0410 hours on the 4th of July, with me at the helm, we hit a reef somewhere in the Virgin Islands. This is that story, written shortly after the misadventure, by my Kiwi friend and shipmate, Murray Burt.

This introduction to the story, the two of us agree, has the value of a perspective that looks back half a century on a youthful adventure. In the 1951 TransPacific Yacht Race, I had sailed as bowman aboard this new Luders Naval Academy yawl. Built in Japan with the finest materials and workmanship, she was “gold plated”, a fine yacht with superb wood carvings in the main saloon and custom bronze castings on the companion ladder with the word Electra on every step.

In 2006 dollars, Electra would cost upwards of $600,000, custom built in all teak woods. Electra, to the best of our knowledge, is still racing in the Miami, Fla. area.

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