By Dick Beaumont – Chairman of Kraken Yachts
Thanks to the restrictions imposed on us all by the virus I can’t say we’ve exactly hit the deck running in 2021, but we have been as busy as ever with Kraken Yachts and Ocean Sailor Magazine.
Dick Durham and I put out our first Ocean Sailor Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, Spotify and we’ve been delighted with the feedback and positive support we’ve received to date. We’ve had hundreds of listeners just in the first few days. Support from the listeners is vital for the podcast’s success, so please check it out and give us a review and a 5-star rating. The next one will be broadcast on 21st February, and we will send out a notification beforehand. Please let us know of any subjects and issues you’d like to hear discussed and Dick D, our star guest, and I will log it in our podcast diary. We’re newcomers to the world of the podcast, so please bear with us and help us improve by submitting your thoughts and comments. Send us a message on
The Kraken design team and I have started work on the bespoke interior layout of the next K50 to go into production for John and Heather Leslie from Boston, U.S.
They have chosen afromosia for the main cabinetry and bulkheads, and their preference is for a four-berth arrangement; master cabin and large forward cabin, incorporating a double bunk-bed layout. This is a variation on the forward area module A1 (as on the Kraken website) which has a double Pullman berth. John and Heather’s choice makes perfect sense to us so we are going to include it in our options for module A in future.
Along with the rest of the UK, I’m still stuck under house arrest as the lockdown here continues in a bid to halt the infection rate of COVID-19.
White Dragon is left sitting on her mooring in Turkey since Brits are banned from flying there and to many other countries, for fear we’ll introduce the UK variant.
A lot of people here are complaining about the privations this different way of living has imposed on us, and while it’s frustrating, I think the pandemic has taught us we must simply learn to enjoy different and simpler things for a while and be thankful that perhaps we might live to fight another day. I’m sure many people have realized that the freedoms we had taken for granted before all this should be cherished. We must use our time to better effect when the maelstrom caused by this plague does eventually pass, as the world’s population becomes vaccinated and herd immunity spreads.
As we went to press news broke that armed pirates attacked a Turkish container ship off the coast of Nigeria killing one and kidnapping 15 of her crew. The MV Mozart was 90 nautical miles off Sao Tome Island in the Gulf of Guinea when the attack happened. The crew of the ship locked themselves into a custom-made ‘protective citadel’ above the cabin to try and evade capture but the pirates used explosives to blast their way in. Three crew remained on board and piloted the ship – which was on passage from Lagos to Cape Town – towards Gabon.
There have been 22 attacks involving 130 sailors in the Gulf of Guinea over the last year. I sailed close to this area on my voyage from Hong Kong to Turkey 2 years ago and stood out 200nm further west into the Atlantic to ensure I avoided the notified piracy area.
In this issue, you will read about the threat of attack by Somali pirates in our Sailors’ Stories section. Whilst it is rare that private yachts are threatened with piracy, we think this subject and whether yacht crews should carry firearms or not, is of great interest to sailors all over the world. Considering the re-emergence of piracy, on the east and west coasts of Africa in particular, we will investigate these issues in the March edition of Ocean Sailor. We would be glad to receive information about readers’ experiences, or your thoughts and views on these emotive subjects.