On Tuesday afternoon the Coast Guard Sector San Francisco watchstanders received a request for assistance near South Beach Marina — a man had capsized his 15-ft sailboat. The unnamed sailor was located at 4:45 p.m. and was rescued and transported back to South Beach Marina with “no reported injuries or medical concerns.”
Now that we’ve established no one was hurt, we can get to the fun part — the boat.
The photos taken by the USCG show us that the flipped boat is a foiling tri. And on closer examination, a TriFoiler by Hobie Cat.
This is what a TriFoiler looks like in its preferred position.
Hobie built its first model in 1981 — a small hydrofoil trimaran sailboat. This then evolved to become the TriFoiler, manufactured in 1995. Following their desire to break the world speed record, Dan and Greg Ketterman built five prototypes (TF20, TF2, TF3 Longshot I and II) and four production prototypes (Avocet 1, 2 & 3, TFP). Longshot, owned and sailed by Russell Long, broke the Class A world speed record, setting the record at “43.55 knots on a 500-meter course in Tarifa, Spain, in 1993.”
According to Hobie’s TriFoiler History, the company built a total of 11 variations of the original hydrofoil trimaran. As you can see from the record above, it is a very fast little boat.
The TriFoiler is no longer in production, and this brings us to our next point of interest. How did this particular TriFoiler end up sailing on the Bay? Who is the sailor, and how did he come to own the boat?
If you know anything about this person and his boat, or if it’s you (we’re very happy that you’re safe, by the way), drop us a line at email@example.com.