Club promises inquiry into fatal boat race mishap - WNEM TV 5

Club promises inquiry into fatal boat race mishap

CHICAGO (AP) -

By JOHN FLESHER
Associated Press

The sponsor of a boat race from Chicago to Mackinac Island says it will investigate the capsizing of a sailing vessel that caused the deaths of 2 crew members during a storm in northern Lake Michigan.

Race chairman Greg Freeman said Tuesday that the Chicago Yacht Club commodore will establish a review board. Speaking online with reporters, he said the club wants to understand what happened and look for ways to improve safety guidelines.

The 35-foot boat WingNuts from Saginaw overturned during fierce gusts around midnight Sunday about 13 miles off Charlevoix. Fifty-1-year-old skipper Mark Morley and 40-year-old crew member Suzanne Bickel died. A rival boat rescued the other six crew members.

Freeman says the storm arose after the race was well under way, so postponing it wasn't an option.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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