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Colin MacRae from Below Deck Sailing Yacht offered some behind-the-scenes insight into the dramatic anchor dragging incident that could have resulted in Parsifal III being shipwrecked.

Captain Glenn Shephard was concerned when deckhand Tom Pearson didn’t wake him immediately after winds picked up and the anchor started to drag. Pearson insisted he didn’t realize the winds were gusting until the alarms sounded. But Shephard believes the deckhand had about 10 minutes before he alerted the crew. This all went down during charter too.

The ‘Below Deck’ anchor drag could have ended up in a shipwreck

The anchor drag was so severe that the sailing yacht could have been smashed up against the rocks on the shore, causing it to be shipwrecked. Shephard referred to a large sailing yacht that has been stuck for at least a year.

Colin MacRae from 'Below Deck Sailing Yacht' laughs during dinner
Colin MacRae |Laurent Basset/Bravo

MacRae, first mate Gary King and Shephard sprung into action to move Parsifal III out of the sand and into deeper water. The dramatic footage showed the entire crew working hard to prevent catastrophe. And MacRae said the situation was worse than what viewers may have realized.

“For those of you that saw yesterday’s Below Deck Sailing episode, us being stuck on the sand like that could have very easily led to us becoming a shipwreck,” he shared on Instagram along with a video.

The ‘Below Deck’ crew battled the elements for an hour

MacRae revealed that Shephard called for additional assistance, which wasn’t shown in the episode.

“What seems like only minutes, in the episode, was actually an hour of us battling the elements to try get the boat off the bottom,” he continued. “We had tug boats on the way. But the response of the captain and crew was phenomenal, and we managed to find a small dip in the sandbank for our keel to slide into and power our way into deeper water.”

“I had engines overheating from all of the sand that we had stirred up,” he added. “Filling my heat exchangers, so had to ask captain Glenn to reduce the RPM. Which in turn meant that the waves would push us even higher into the beach until the engine cooled down. I knew that this was a better option than losing the engine altogether, as we would have been proper f***ed, and turned into one of the shipwreck stories.” 

Everyone was completely exhausted

The crew rallied but MacRae said they were exhausted. “Just wanted to share my little insight into the severity of what some of you have watched, and just how physically and emotionally draining that day was, all the while still being on a f***ing charter!!!” he exclaimed.

“I took this video absolutely exhausted, lying on the control room floor as we motored back to the dock. Needless to say, we made a fairly successful attempt at drowning our sorrows that night, but not enough to wipe the memory of that disastrous morning at sea…,” he wrote.


‘Below Deck Sailing Yacht’: Tom Pearson’s Job Is in Jeopardy – ‘100 Times Worse Than Hitting the Dock’

Stew Ashley Marti, who calmly served coffee to the guests during the ordeal praised MacRae for his actions. “Lucky we had you! Was definitely a terrible morning,” she wrote.

MacRae noticed how she contributed to keeping the crew and the guests safe. “I only saw how calm you kept the guests when I saw it on tv. You did good kid,” he replied.