Vestas 11th Hour Racing involved in fatal collision, racing crew unharmed

VESTAS 11TH HOUR RACING was involved in a collision Friday near Hong Kong that resulted in a non-racing crew fatal casualty during the Volvo Ocean Race. An investigation into the collision is ongoing. / COURTESY VOLVO OCEAN RACE/MARTIN KERUZORE
VESTAS 11TH HOUR RACING was involved in a collision Friday near Hong Kong that resulted in a non-racing crew fatal casualty during the Volvo Ocean Race. An investigation into the collision is ongoing. / COURTESY VOLVO OCEAN RACE/MARTIN KERUZORE

PROVIDENCE –  On Friday, the Vestas 11th Hour Racing team in the Volvo Ocean Race collided with a non-racing boat 30 miles from the leg 4 finish line in Hong Kong, causing a fatal casualty on the non-racing vessel’s crew, according to Phil Lawrence, race director of the Volvo Ocean Race.

Crew members of Vestas 11th Hour Racing were uninjured in the incident. The other nine members of the non-racing vessel were rescued. The man who was killed in the incident was airlifted to a hospital following the collision.

Lawrence confirmed the collision sunk the impacted boat. There was damage to the hull of the Vestas 11th Hour Racing vessel but the crew was able to return to port unaided after assisting with the rescue.

Lawrence said there is an ongoing investigation into the collision and that both Volvo  Ocean Race and the racing team are working with the Hong Kong Police and Maritime Authority to support the investigation.

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Vestas 11th Hour Racing retired from leg 4 of the race but remained in third place overall, behind MAPFRE and Dongfeng Race Team.

“As you would imagine, they are very shaken and deeply saddened by the incident,” said Lawrence in a statement. “They are being supported by the rest of their team as well as the Volvo Ocean Race organisation and have access to professional support should they request it.”

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