Please select your home edition
Edition
Cooper Teamwear 728x90 2

Volvo Ocean Race- Broken rudder masks hull split for Team Sanya

by Richard Gladwell on 11 Apr 2012
Sanya gets into her work on the way back up the Waitemata - Volvo Ocean Race Auckland - Start March 18,2012 Richard Gladwell www.photosport.co.nz

Team Sanya skipper, Mike Sanderson revealed to Sail-World.com today that a significant crack was found in the hull of the Volvo 70 Team Sanya, when she was pulled out of the water to be shipped to Miami.

Sanya, the Chinese sponsored entry suffered a broken rudder in the Southern Ocean while sailing at 25 knots and leading the other five competitors in the 2011/12 Volvo Ocean Race. She took eight days to sail back to the port of Tauranga where she was loaded on a ship for Miami, USA where she will rejoin the race.

'As it turned out we were very fortunate to have come back to the dock,' Sanderson told Sail-World.com. 'When we hauled the boat we found a 1.5metre crack in the bottom. The crack ran at a 45 degree angle from the propeller box to the rudder we had broken.'

'It was through the outside skin. We were lucky to have got back to New Zealand. Otherwise we were in a world of bother,' reflected Sanderson, in one of the great understatements of sailing.

'When we hit something in the first leg, the split in the hull was contained within the watertight bulkhead area in the bow. The issue we would have had here was that the split would have been in the middle of the boat. The watertight ends can hold the boat afloat, but in all seriousness, I would not like to be testing that ability, where we were, in the Southern Ocean.

'The crack was all the way through the outside skin, so it was only a matter of time before it went right through the hull. It would have deteriorated quite quickly.



'When the rudder broke we were sailing at 25-35kts of boatspeed. When we started limping home, we could only sail at ten knots so we didn't really notice it at all. If we had kept going at full race pace we would have been in a lot of bother, that's for sure.


Sanderson says the next stage would have been for the the outer skin to start to peel off, followed by the core. 'Then there would have only been the inside skin between us and the Southern Ocean,' he added. 'Not an ideal situation.'

The crack was only noticed when Sanya was lifted onto the ship for Miami.

At this stage they have not identified the cause. 'For sure, we will be able to fix it in Miami. We will have a team of boatbuilders there and hopefully we can do it in time.' Sanderson adds that they don't have a lot of spare time in Miami, despite missing Leg 6 from Itajai, Brazil. Sanya is expected to arrive in Miami on 26 April and In Port racing starts in mid-May.

Sanderson told Sail-World.com that the damage could have occurred on the opening night of the race, when the six yachts hit big seas leaving Auckland, forcing Abu Dhabi to return for repairs after popping a J4 bulkhead from the hull.

'There were some very nasty waves coming out of Auckland, or maybe it was when we were smoking downwind in the Southern Ocean. I tend to think that we did it during the high speed stuff, as if we had started that with a crack like that, we would have just ripped the bottom out of the boat. So I am inclined to think that it came from the wracking of the boat - and all the twisting and bending down south.'


Sanderson is philosophical about the rudder breaking, as it is now obvious what could have been a much more serious situation.

'Twice now, we have had to pull out when in the lead. We had a good previous day when we had not only positioned ourselves closest to the mark (the Western Ice Gate) but also had very nice leverage on the fleet on starboard gybe. At the time I felt we could cash in and even extend our advantage', he told Sail-World.com

The full interview with Mike Sanderson will be published in a day or two in Sail-World.com covering his thoughts on the future of the race, the structural issues with the boats, cost reduction and more.

Pittwater to Paradise 2018 660x82Auckland On the Water Boat ShowHarken AUS HL Snatch Block 660x82

Related Articles

Tank killers
Not all that long ago, the US Army started using depleted Uranium shells. Not all that long ago, the US Army started using depleted Uranium shells. These shells were wickedly awesome at their job, which was killing enemy tanks in their tracks (and yes the pun is fully intended). The mighty, turbine powered, M1 Abrams became even more formidable, and their crews somewhat safer again.
Posted on 24 Jul
Ian Walker - Musto Ambassador on the Volvo Ocean Race, America's Cup
Ian Walker on his Volvo Ocean Race win, why food and clothing are so important offshore, his views on the America's Cup We speak to Musto ambassador Ian Walker about his Volvo Ocean Race win, why food and clothing are so important offshore, his views on the America's Cup, his new desk job, sailing for fun, and 20 years of the John Merricks Sailing Trust.
Posted on 23 Jul
Black Jack Yachting. Bigger boat. Bigger team. Even bigger performance
Throughout the iterations of maxis called Black Jack, a strong, consistent and talented team has been their focus Throughout the iterations of maxis called Black Jack, a strong, consistent and talented team has been their focus. Some were sail makers, like Skipper Mark Bradford and also Vaughan Prentice from North Sails’ Brisbane loft. Others were riggers, such as Bruce Clarke, and there are even boat builders, like Gary van Lunteren, as well as Ash Deeks.
Posted on 20 Jul
Gladwell's Line - America's Cup returns to its new home and thinking
Emirates Team New Zealand's win in the 35th America's Cup ends 17-years of wandering in the AC wilderness Emirates Team New Zealand's win in the 35th America's Cup ends 17-years of wandering in the AC wilderness and will open a new era of America's Cup, New Zealand and World Sailing. A rookie crew won the most prestigious trophy in sailing, and one of the most difficult to win in any sport.
Posted on 29 Jun
SuperFoilers Are Go!
SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets in the great scheme of things, they come together in the one form as harmoniously as a Rolls Royce, and also deliver intense energy way past the sum of their parts, just like some amazing band.
Posted on 28 Jun
Poppy takes Australia to her dad who’s afflicted with Parkinson’s
It’s a very sad way to begin such a great voyage. Not that you would know from the ultra-effervescent Poppy Moore... It’s a very sad way to begin such a great voyage. Not that you would know from the ultra-effervescent Poppy Moore, mind you. So the chance to talk with her and learn her tale was fantastic, and she is also the best one to recount it. “I decided to sail around Australia to raise awareness and funds for Parkinson’s, because my father’s got Parkinson’s
Posted on 5 Jun
Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600 - It just works
Every now and then a boat just clicks. It has all the right bits, of the correct dimensions, in the appropriate places Every now and then a boat just clicks. It has all the right bits, of the correct dimensions, in the appropriate places, and out of it all you get something that simply sings. The Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600 is one of these craft. It was designed and built in parallel to the other, more well known versions of the brand’s vessels, and benefits from being more geared towards performance, without going tot
Posted on 23 May
The return to Coffs!
The word is out that the new race to Coffs Harbour is on. The phoenix would run once again in the Christmas timeslot The word is out that the new race to Coffs Harbour is on. The phoenix would run once again in the traditional Christmas timeslot, and also be the much easier to digest 200 or so miles. The ‘new’ race would also be geared towards club racers, so they, and their non-pro crews could be out and back, and almost more importantly, returned to work before anyone missed them. Bring it on...
Posted on 22 May
America's Cup - Southern Spars AC50 build for Emirates Team NZ + Video
The Peter Blake skippered Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map 27 years after Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map with her unequalled clean sweep of the 1989/90 Whitbread Round the World Race, Southern Spars were called on to build Emirates Team NZ's America's Cup Challenger. Here's a look behind the scenes at the composite engineering process Southern Spars employ on projects ranging from Volvo OR spars, to Olympic bike wheels to an AC50
Posted on 1 May
Debbie says the 8thP with Insurance is Patience (Pt.III)
We’re back to keep exploring the nature of TC Debbie and how she came to tell us about the eighth P of insurance We’re back to keep exploring the nature of TC Debbie and how she came to tell us about the eighth P of insurance. We’ve looked at what it was like to come into a disaster zone, seen the evidence of those that did the right thing, and how the area is already on the road to recovery. Now we’ll see why patience is the key in the aftermath of her fury.
Posted on 30 Apr