Guy SALTER (GBR), Media Crew Member onboard Ericsson 4 said last night, "It's not everyday you get to have a ride as we have had over the past day or so. To get a new 24-hour record has been superb, but the reality of that feat out here hasn't really sunk in. We know we have a record but what is more on the fellas' minds is getting to Cape Town and hopefully at the front of the pack, avoiding damage to ourselves and the yacht. All the boys look really drained - sleep is not the easiest on Ericsson 4 - I can only describe the motion as I would imagine re-entry on the space shuttle is like."
The record breaking speed of Ericsson 4 has helped the Swedish entry extend her lead by 30nm over the past 12 hours up to 71nm at the 07:00 UTC poll this morning. Ken READ (USA) and his team onboard PUMA have been doing their utmost to hang onto the coattails of the leaders and remain in second place, whilst Ericsson 3 (Anders LEWANDER/SWE) has moved up into third, with Green Dragon (Ian WALKER/GBR) losing miles overnight as they made a move to position themselves to the south of the leaders.
Further back in the fleet, the westerly gale continued to whip up seas in excess of eight metres. Sailing at around 25 knots, Telefónica Black (Fernando ECHAVARRI/ESP) launched off a particularly large wave, momentarily lost control of the boat and crash landed only to find that one of the rudders had sheared off and part of a daggerboard and the bowsprit were gone. None of the crew was injured and the damage to the yacht was quickly assessed. The crew has mounted an emergency rudder and are continuing on course to Cape Town, albeit rather more slowly.
Telefónica Syndicate Head, Pedro CAMPOS (ESP), said that the safety of the crew was the first priority and reported that all are well and unhurt. He confirmed that the damage to the yacht was not thought to be structural in any way but, understandably, the crew is very disappointed to have to nurse the yacht into Cape Town. He praised the crew for their professionalism and the seamanlike manner in which they dealt with the situation.
Leg One Day 20: 07:00 UTC Volvo Ocean Race Positions
(boat name/country/skipper/nationality/distance to leader)
Ericsson 4 SWE (Torben GRAEL/BRA) DTF 1267
PUMA Racing Team USA (Ken READ/USA) +71
Ericsson 3 SWE (Anders LEWANDER/SWE) +153
Green Dragon IRL/CHN (Ian WALKER/GBR) +216
Telefónica Blue ESP (Bouwe BEKKING/NED) +299
Telefónica Black ESP (Fernando ECHAVARRI/ESP) +370
Delta Lloyd IRL (Ger O'ROURKE/IRL) +428
Team Russia RUS (Andreas HANAKAMP/AUT) +430
Volvo Ocean Race Leaderboard*
(After Leg One Scoring Gate)
1. Telefónica Blue (Bouwe BEKKING/Iker MARTINEZ), 6 points
2. Telefónica Black (Fernando ECHAVARRI), 6 points
3. Puma Il Mostro (Ken READ), 6 points
4. Ericsson 4 (Torben GRAEL), 6 points
5. Green Dragon (Ian WALKER), 6 points
6. Delta Lloyd (Ger O'ROURKE), 2 point
7. Ericsson 3 (Anders LEWANDER), 1 points
8. Team Russia (Andreas HANAKAMP), 1 points
Volvo Ocean Race - www.volvooceanrace.org