The US coast guard were informed by Malisi
(Outremer 64) that debris had been sighted at 2100UTC on 21/05 within the search area of missing yacht Cheeki Rafiki
. The sighting comes after Malisi
spent 36 hours scouring the area after diverting to assist with the search, under direction of the US Coastguard. Skipper Patrick Michel reported the object appeared to be ‘a wooden plank about 1-1.5m long and 20-30cm wide, medium brown in colour
’ and that no marine growth was apparent, indicating that it is likely to have entered the water relatively recently. Two other items of debris were also sighted by Malisi with the search area and reported to the US Coastguard.
Following the sighting, Malisi has now left the search area and resumed course for their original destination of Horta in the Azores islands, due to crew commitments. They have been praised internationally and thanked by the families of the missing men for their efforts in assisting with the search. British yacht Gertha 4, also part of the ARC Europe fleet, has now entered the search area and begun to sail in a search pattern in the hope of further sightings.