When the Aegean, a 37-foot Hunter, abruptly disappeared during the Newport-Ensenada Race, killing four, many speculated that the sailboat may have been run down by a big ship. A US Sailing Indepenedent Review Panel in June determined that the Aegean almost certainly struck the tip of North Coronado island. But there was always just the tiniest shred of doubt.
Now two San Diegans have likely put any questions to rest by discovering the wreck of the hull off Coronado Island:
San Diego lifeguard Ed Harris and boater Russell Moore, who owns La Jolla-based Xplore Offshore, made three visits to the crash site, beginning on May 2. This month, they turned over to the Coast Guard about an hour of underwater video footage from the site, along with a navigation panel, laptop computer and controls that they hope will shed light on what happened the night of the crash…
Moore and his buddy, Harris, did not find the remains of the sailboat until their second visit on Aug. 9.
“It’s all mangled and broken up like it’s been in a Cuisinart for four months,” Moore said of the boat.
They waited until this week to share their findings with the public because they have no definitive answers.
“We were really just trying to conclude a mystery that has intrigued a lot of sailors and boaters here and nationwide,” Moore said.
He said he will leave it to the Coast Guard and sailing association to draw conclusions from the new information that he and Harris collected, but he suspects the Aegean did not collide with a larger vessel.
“Clearly there was a tragic error made, or something that will never be known,” Moore said.
The sea doesn't often give up her mysteries, but in this case it seems that she will.
This NBC report includes some of the video that Moore and Harris shot: