In case you haven’t heard about these guys yet, read the quick synopsis the Old Salt Blog recently gave on them:
Two American sailors, Bob Weise and Steve Shapiro, both 71, have been attempting to sail across the Atlantic from Norway to Maine in a 40′ gaff rigged sloop named Nora. They began the attempt last July and it has not gone well. In the last seven months, they have been rescued nine times. In this case, persistence is not a virtue.
Now, even veteran yachtsman is saying enough is enough. In a recent BBC interview, Sir Robin said, “This is no longer a joke. It costs between £6,000 and £8,000 every time a lifeboat is launched. These guys are costing the RNLI a fortune. They need to frankly pack it in or, I hate to say it, get the hell out of our waters.”
A brief record of their rescue calls, thus far:
- Two rescues by Norwegian and Danish teams, once when the propeller shaft was damaged and the second time when the battery failed
- Two rescues in Scotland after running aground and having more propeller problems
- They were assisted in Northern Ireland when the vessel ran aground
- They called a lifeboat when the boat ran aground in the Irish Republic
- Two rescues in Cornwall, after a mechanical problem and when one of the men got into difficulty rowing to the yacht
- The ninth callout was made when the boat tipped over causing a fire on board in Hayle Harbour, Cornwall
As reported by the BBC: Peter Haddock, Hayle harbourmaster, said he was worried about the sailors’ safety and that of emergency services. Mr Haddock said he raised the alarm on Tuesday after seeing smoke coming from the vessel’s forward hatch and described the pair as a “catastrophe waiting to happen”.
Unfortunately, the two hapless US sailors plan to keep trying to continue their bumbling voyage.
Christa and I have been reading about these guys from time to time, so I Googled them to see what other updates may be out there.
Funny enough, Good Morning America managed to grab them for an interview. We figure as a rule you should always try to hear the other side’s perspective, but in this case I don’t think they did themselves any favours with quips like, “…realize that we won the war.”
Now, a debate on the weight of US contribution to the allied war effort notwithstanding, it is probably not a good idea to say something that may antagonize the same people that you have been, and most likely will again, rely on to save you life.
It’s kid of like upsetting people that handle your food…