Volvo Ocean Race- Team Sanya suffers hull damage and suspends racing

Team Sanya in the Mediterranean port of Motril assessing the state of their boat after hull damage forced them to suspend racing on Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12.
Team Sanya

Aksel Magdahl, navigator on board Team Sanya, reported at 0834 UTC Sunday, November 6 that they had suffered hull damage on the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, which began yesterday in Alicante.

Skipper Mike Sanderson has confirmed to Volvo Ocean Race control: 'The situation is very much under control, everyone is obviously disappointed but in good spirits as all are safe on board.'

The boat was approximately 30 nautical miles SE of Motril, on the coast of Spain. The wind was blowing 43 plus knots and the waves were around 10.5 metres.

The watertight doors had already been closed as a precaution due to the prevailing conditions and the boat is making its way to Puerto de Motril. After entering flat water, Team Sanya have suspended racing.

Volvo Ocean Race control is in constant contact with the team while establishing the full extent of the damage so that the crew are given full support to enable them to deal with the situation.

Team Sanya’s shore team are working on a recovery plan to ensure the yacht can rejoin the Volvo Ocean Race as soon as practically possible.

There are now four yachts left racing in the initial six boat fleet, after Abu Dhabi (Ian Walker) broke her mast a few hours into the race at 7.15pm on Saturday.

Team Sanya, a Chinese entry was the former Telefonica Blue which raced in the previous edition of the Volvo Race, and had a nasty incident when she hit a rock at the start of the penultimate leg in Sweden.