With a recorded top racing speed of 99.94 km/h and a nine-strong F50 fleet, SailGP’s racing action always delivers plenty of drama. We round up the top five craziest crashes in SailGP history, from Great Britain running over the Japanese F50 to Spain hitting the home favorites United States in San Francisco.
Japan collides with the United States at Season 2’s Bermuda Sail Grand Prix
First up is the moment the United States and Japan collided on the second day of Season 2’s Bermuda Sail Grand Prix. The incident occurred in the first fleet race of the day and was a result of Japan’s late attempt to tack. As a result, the team remained on a collision course with the Americans, with Japan’s bow becoming entangled with the U.S.’s backstay. Both teams were unable to sail for the rest of the day due to the damage caused to the F50s and, to add insult to injury, the United States F50 capsized shortly after the incident.
Spain hits the United States in San Francisco
In second is the moment Spain hit the United States on the second day of the San Francisco Grand Final in March 2022. The incident, which saw Spain attempt to dive inside at the mark and instead collide with the home favorite team, took place during Jordi Xammar’s first event as Spain driver was recently examined in the latest episode of Racing on the Edge after it proved devastating to his confidence.
Great Britain hits Japan in Sydney
Perhaps the most terrifying SailGP crash ever took place on the water of Sydney Harbor in the pre-start of the third fleet race. Great Britain collided with Japan, causing serious damage to the team’s F50. Great Britain driver Ben Ainslie admitted he was at fault in the incident and offered Japan driver Nathan Outteridge the undamaged British F50 to allow the team to continue competing in the event.
New Zealand and France collide in San Francisco
The collision between France and New Zealand also occurred on the second day of the San Francisco Grand Final as the fifth fleet race got underway. Both teams were left in the wake of Great Britain, with New Zealand failing to keep clear of France. As a result, the Kiwis were handed four penalty points and deducted one overall season points from their Championship total.
Great Britain hits a rock in Copenhagen
Finally, here is the moment the British F50 hit an uncharted rock in training ahead of the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Season 3. The team was completing pre-race drills outside of the racecourse boundary when they hit the rock. Damage was extensive - with the head of the starboard rudder snapped clean off and damage to the foil and board case. Unfortunately the damage was so great that Great Britain was completely ruled out of racing in the event.