One of NZ’s most dramatic powerboat crashes remembered

Arguably New Zealand’s most dramatic offshore powerboat crash is being remembered today, 21 years after  it nearly claimed the life of acclaimed racer Graeme Horne.

Horne was captaining “Fleetlease” with two crew at 150 km/h in a televised race when it crossed the wake of an Auckland harbour ferry and flipped in a horror smash.

Horne survived the accident on 9 March 1996, although the former Gestro-Horne advertising boss passed away in September 2016 at the age of 69.

This week, Horne’s daughter Angie paid tribute to her late father and the two medics who saved his life against all odds – Willy Heatley and Chris Deacon:

“9.3.1996. 21 years ago on Thursday this happened. Does anyone remember? The night of this accident we were told that, among a multitude of other injuries, dad had salt water on his brain and a bleed on another part of his brain. And that one of these things would kill him that night. Not might. Would. My dad was a fighter for sure. On the 9th of March 1996 if you had told me he would live another 20.5 years I probably would have laughed at you (well, sobbed and begged and hoped it would be true) And he did. If you had told me my perfectly healthy mum and brother would both be gone in the next few years I probably would have punched you. Hard. And I’m not really a punchy sort of person. That happened too. What a rollercoaster. So much thanks to Willy and Chris and the many others who did everything they could to save dads life – thanks for the bonus 20 years guys x.”

Angie posted video of the RealTV story on the crash, on her Facebook page,

Or you can see it here: