An inquest has been opened into the death in the Caribbean of a professional sailor from Hampshire.

Sam Nicholas Richmond, 37, died on March 10 in a Florida hospital after an incident in Antigua.

Mr Richmond, of Manor Road, Durley, had been training for Superyacht Challenge Antigua. Part of his boat's runner system rigging failed which resulted in a head injury, an inquest heard.

According to the Antigua Observer, Mr Richmond had worked as UK sales manager for sail-making firm North Sails for more than a decade.

Also that his transition from sailing as a hobby to a career began with a stint as an instructor in Spain, followed by coaching national youth squads before going on to race big boats in 2004.

Area coroner Jason Pegg said that the preliminary cause of death was a head injury.

The inquest at Winchester coroner's court was adjourned until October 17.

The Antigua Observer reported that the following morning after  the incident the yachting community staged a start line memorial parade in his honour with sailors lining the dock in a mark of respect and a minute of silence observed.

Sailor Mike Broughton told the newspaper that Mr Richmond was “universally loved and one of the brightest stars in superyacht racing”.

In a Facebook post Richmond’s wife Colette spoke of her “devastating sadness”.

“On Thursday 10 March, Sam passed away as a result of a terrible accident whilst sailing in Antigua. He was so well loved by me, his daughters Maisie and Martha, his family and the most amazing circle of friends anybody could aspire to have,” she wrote.

Colette Richmond has invited friends and loved ones to email treasured memories and stories detailing how her husband had touched lives.

“Over this past week, one of my few comforts has been reminiscing with friends and I would love to capture that in writing for the future.

“I know what a legend Sam was, but it’s important for me that Maisie and Martha can also in time read through these memories and understand that, as well as being the most amazing Daddy, he was one of the world’s all-round superstars.

“Wherever you are Sam, I hope you are near the sea with a glass of rosé in your hand,” she added.

She has asked people to share their memories of Sam by emailing


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