A complete loss of power left a former BT Global Challenge yacht unable to continue its voyage without assistance from the RNLI

A former BT Global Challenge yacht – now called Elinca – has been helped into harbour by the RNLI after a complete loss of power off the Isle of Wight.

The skipper of the 40-tonne vessel contacted the UK Coastguard around 2.5 nautical miles west-south-west of The Needles to report the yacht had no electrics, no engine and no anchor.

The volunteer crew of Yarmouth RNLI were scrambled just before 5.30pm yesterday (6 September).

The Severn class lifeboat then escorted Elinca and her crew of three towards Yarmouth whilst the 67-foot yacht was under sail.

The RNLI crew then carried out an alongside tow to safely manoeuvre the yacht into harbour.

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A spokesman for Yarmouth RNLI said: “The skipper of the former BT Global Challenge yacht Elinca contacted the UK Coastguard to report that the vessel had no electrics, no engine and no anchor, which meant that she would not be able to safely continue her journey or return to harbour without assistance.”

He said it was understood that “the RNLI’s Swanage lifeboat assisted the same vessel into Poole harbour three days ago under similar circumstances.”

Elinca is a Challenge 67′ yacht built in 1996 for the BT Global Challenge race.

Named Time and Tide, she competed in the 1996/7 edition of the race, and was the first yacht to finish the round the world race with a disabled crew.

Skippered by James Hatfield, the yacht came 14th in the race, with a combined elapsed time of 176d 18h 09m 55s.

It then became a charter yacht based in Scotland, offering trips to the Hebrides, St Kilda, Iceland and the Faroes.