Colin Reveals ‘Below Deck Sailing Yacht’ Season 3 Chase Boat ‘Disappeared’ When Boat Ran Aground

Below Deck Sailing Yacht chief engineer Colin MacRae revealed that the season 3 chase boat abandoned Parsifal III when it ran aground, essentially leaving the crew alone.

MacRae clarified that the actual Below Deck Sailing Yacht Season 3 production team didn’t abandon the cast, but the captain and crew hired to man the chase boat decided to completely disappear during the emergency. A chase boat is a supportive vessel some superyachts have in tow, designed to be almost a small, floating guesthouse. A chase boat differs from a tender in that the tender can be housed inside the yacht, whereas the chase boat is usually towed behind the yacht.

‘Below Deck’ chase boat ‘disappeared’ when the crew needed them

MacRae recalled the serious nature of running aground, sharing how the wake being made by the tender didn’t provide much help. However, the chase boat could have provided the crew with enough power to make a harrowing situation a lot safer.

Colin MacRae from 'Below Deck Sailing Yacht' Season 3 had dinner with chef Marcos Spaziani
Colin MacRae |Laurent Basset/Bravo

“But it was touch and go,” MacRae recalled on the Dear Diary, You’re Effed podcast. “We had tugboats ready. We had called the coastguard. Our chase boat had actually gone and just disappeared on us in that moment as well, which no one has ever spoken about and I don’t know if I’m allowed (to share) how the chase boat just took off. Like, we’re asking them, we’re on the bow. I was on the bow.”

“And we would have loved for them to just come over to us and throw some lines,” he added. “They actually drove off in the opposite direction. They didn’t want to be involved. I don’t know exactly why. That’s a production thing. But standing on the bow of that boat and the chase boat driving away from us, I lost absolutely all respect for that captain.”

But the chase boat captain and crew stayed on for the rest of season 3

MacRae was shocked that the Below Deck Sailing Yacht Season 3 chase boat abandoned Parsifall III during the moment the crew needed them the most. “Yeah, it’s horrible,” he said. “And [the captain] stayed on for the rest of the season, but I heard bits and pieces from some of the production team. But that’s not good seamanship right there.”

Podcast host and former Below Deck Mediterranean chief stew Hannah Ferrier clarified how serious it was that the chase boat left the crew. “Someone’s basically letting out a mayday call and you’re driving away,” she remarked.

“Yeah, so that was a bit disconcerting,” MacRae reflected. “So the only boat that we had in the water around us was our tender. And that was that wasn’t helping much at all. You know, [Captain] Glenn [Shephard] had the right idea. But it wasn’t doing s***. Like, it’s a little tender. But you know, the chase boats, they’ve got some horsepower so that that could have really helped us. Yeah, that’s not a production thing that’s just like the actual crew of the chase boat.”

‘Below Deck Sailing Yacht’ producers had to spring into action

MacRae also shared how Below Deck Sailing Yacht Season 3 producers had to spring into action to capture the drama because the camera crew hadn’t arrived for their shift. “The night watch girl, she was running around with a Go-Pro,” he recalled. “So now when I’m watching it’s pretty clearly Go-Pro footage. It was such an early hour of the morning that they didn’t capture it as well as they would have in the middle of the day.”

“That clearly comes across in the episode,” he added. MacRae also shared a video and behind-the-scenes explanation of how serious the situation became.

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