June 11, 2018
Breaking News From The Great Pacific Race
Statement from The Great Pacific Race:
"On Sunday, June 10th at 20:19 PDT the Great Pacific Race control office were called by Team Attack Poverty aboard the ocean row boat Anne, requesting a medical consultation. During the medical consultation it became clear that one of the two crew members, Mike Matson (33, Houston, TX), who had been outside rowing during a vessel capsize a day earlier was having difficulty breathing. One of the race’s Support Yachts, the Galen Diana, was approximately 10nm away from Anne and was immediately dispatched to her location.
The US Coast Guard Rescue Command Center at Alameda were notified of the situation and the vessel’s location 100nm due west of Pt. Conception. The US Coast Guard then took control of the rescue coordination and asked the HMM container vessel Hyundai Bangkok for assistance. The captain of the Hyundai Bangkok graciously responded and was first to arrive on scene around 21:40 PDT.
In near gale force conditions and with seas up to 16ft the captain of the Hyundai Bangkok came alongside the ocean row boat Anne and brought both Mike Matson and Brian Krauskopf (29, Houston, TX) aboard for swift medical assessment aboard the large stable vessel where helicopter evacuation could be more easily carried out if deemed necessary. The crew were confirmed as safely aboard the Hyundai Bangkok by 22:45 PDT.
Chris Martin, Race Director of the Great Pacific Race, said:
To have this very experienced crew drop out of the Great Pacific Race is both surprising and disappointing. This crew had shown great promise, ability and knowledge and showed a great sense of humor in their preparations prior to the race start. The safety of our crews is our primary importance and so when it was confirmed that Mike Matson was struggling to breath, the decision to abort their row and seek emergency medical attention was the only sensible course of action.
The weather has been particularly strong over the last few days and most other crews in the race have deployed their parachute anchor to prevent them capsizing and to ensure they don’t lose progress west that they have worked so hard to achieve earlier in the week.
We remain vigilant and alert to ensure the safety and success of the crews who remain in the Great Pacific Race and look forward to welcoming Mike and Brian back on land later today when the Hyundai Bangkok docks.
We have retired the crew from the race tracking unit but be aware that we know the position of Anne and will help the crew where possible in their aim to recover her in the coming days.
Matson and Krauskopf had previously successfully completed the Atlantic Rowing Race in 2017 in a time of 49 days, 14 hours and 4 minutes as a three person team together with crewmate David Alviar (Houston, TX)
The weather conditions on scene were windy with choppy seas: wind at around 28 – 32 knots from the North North West with waves of 12-16 feet.
Our thanks go out to the members of USCG RCC Alameda and the Captain and crew of the HMM Hyundai Bangkok for their swift actions in ensuring the safety of this crew.
Any further updates will be posted on the official website at www.greatpacificrace.com."