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LOS ANGELES — Three crew members of a sailboat were found dead and a fourth person was missing Saturday after their yacht ran into trouble during a race off the coasts of California and Mexico, the state’s second ocean racing tragedy this month.

The 37-foot Aegean was participating in the 125-mile Newport, Calif. to Ensenada, Mexico, yacht race when something happened to the vessel, Coast Guard Petty Officer Henry Dunphy said.

Other yachts near the Coronado Islands in Mexico reported seeing debris from the sailboat Saturday morning. By midafternoon, searchers found the bodies and debris from the Aegean, whose home port is Redondo Beach, Officer Dunphy said.

The Coast Guard said it still doesn’t know if the yacht was in a wreck or what happened to it.

Officer Dunphy said conditions were fine for sailing, with good visibility and moderate ocean swells of 6-to-8 feet.

The names of the dead were not released pending notification of next of kin.

A total of 210 boats were registered in the 65th annual yacht race, according to the Newport Ocean Sailing Association’s website. It wasn’t immediately clear how many actually participated and how many finished.

The association’s commodore, reached by phone in Ensenada, said that he didn’t know the members of the Aegean or how many people were aboard.

“This has never happened in the entire 65 years of the race that I’m aware of,” Chuck Iverson said. “We’re all shocked by this whole event.”

The Coronado Islands are four small, largely uninhabited islands about 15 miles south of San Diego.

The deaths come two weeks after five sailors died in the waters off Northern California when their 38-foot yacht was hit by powerful waves, smashed into rocks and capsized during a race.


Dolphin spends third day in state wetlands

HUNTINGTON BEACH — A wayward dolphin is spending a third straight day in a narrow wetlands channel along the Southern California coast, under the watchful eyes of wildlife experts.

Peter Wallerstein of Marine Animal Rescue said Sunday that the 6-foot-long, black-and-white common dolphin looks healthy, but appears slightly disoriented.

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