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Central Lechera Asturiana dismasted BWR#5

March 2, 2011
This was Mike Goldings 2004-5 Vendée Globe boat. Achieved third place as Ecover 2.

At around 1815hrs UTC yesterday evening the mast of Central Lechera Asturiana broke with half of the spar falling into the water.

“Fortunately there has not been any injuries of any kind to either of us, both Fran and I are fine.”Merediz confirmed in a phone conversation with his team. “We do not wish to retire, we wish to carry on.”

Central Lechera Asturiana are heading for Wellington which was 290 miles from their reported position. On arrival in the New Zealand capital they will carry out a detailed assessment of the damages with representatives of North Sails and Southern Spars from Auckland. When the incident happened this evening the IMOCA Open 60 was approximately 160 miles west of Cape Farewell, heading for the Cook Strait and lying in 11th place.

Merediz and Palacio have told Race HQ in Barcelona that they were making around 15kts of boat speed with around 20-25kts of wind at 140-160 degrees in a heavy crossed sea when the rig gave way.

After breaking their mast off Lisbon on the 2nd of December whilst on the delivery passage from Sanxenxo to Barcelona, they won their three week race to step a replacement rig on time and managed to make the race start on 31st December.  Central Lechera Asturiana made a technical pit-stop Cape Town to repair their hydraulics for their keel ram.

The boat raced in the first edition of the Barcelona World Race with Pachi Rivero and Javier ‘Bubí’ Sanso as Mutua Madrileña.

The leaders are about to round Cape Horn, the leading pair are going hammer and tong! I predict one will break and the other will be left in strong position for a win. Third place are a half an Atlantic away! Just to give you an idea what it’s like down there…take a look at this…God Almighty!

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