I'm sorry for the delay in replying to this post, as I've only just seen it.
I refer to the BB "Cat-man-do" mentioned at the beginning of the thread. I was on-board Cat-man-do on the ARC in '07. I feel I should maybe add a few words. The "rig" failure referred to was not a rig failure as such, but a failure of the blocks used to tack the front of the sail to the front of the hulls.
We used the Harken
blocks recommended and supplied by the supplier of the Parasail, before we got to St Lucia
there was a huge bang as first, one of the blocks failed, closely followed by the other. They were subsequently replaced with Harken
Black Magics' at huge expense. The supplier of the sail declined to help with replacements
One thing I would mention though is a rig failure we had on the way back, about 500 miles from Portugal
. If you have a BB 385 and the Bowsprit
is held in place by "shrouds"? from the bottom of the hulls. Please check if the shrouds have a normal shackle at one end. If they have I strongly recommend they are replaced with bottle screws. We had a shackle fail and it very nearly brought the whole rig down. There was only two of us on board and stopping the genoa forestay flapping around and not ripping the rest of the rig off the boat was not something I'd like to repeat.
On Cat-man-do they've since been repaired and strengthened.