Queen Mary 2 To The Rescue
Tuesday 20th June 2017, 12:00am
Ex-Royal Marine, Mervyn Wheatley,73, was forced to send out the mayday after getting into difficulty which saw his yacht severely damaged by a hurricane, whilst he was taking part in a 7,500-mile transatlantic race.
While his boat was being hit with 50ft waves as well as winds of up to 70mph, it was up to Queen Mary 2 to come to his rescue. The recently remastered Cunard flagship, which has 1,360 cabins diverted from its course in order to help Mr. Wheatley along with an RAF Hercules.
Mr Wheatley’s boat, Tamarind, suffered severe damage, but he however was reported to be uninjured and in good spirits, considering everything that had happened.
The master of Queen Mary 2, Captain Chris Wells, speaking to The Independent said: “We were pleased to be able to help and delighted that the yachtsman is safe and well and now onboard.”
Wheatley, speaking from the ship informed The Times that he has never been on a cruise before and added “I may be a little less snooty about cruise ships now.”
This was to be Mr. Wheatley’s 19th Atlantic crossing and he was planning on sailing back single-handed, which would have eventually seen him finish his 6,500-nautical-mile trip in July or August.
By Richard Hemming