While they have no chance of winning, Team Vestas Wind will be returning to the Volvo Ocean Race. The team, sailing a Volvo Ocean 65, suffered a major grounding on the Cargados Carajos archipelago 430 km to the northeast of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean on November 29th. While there were no casualties, the boat lost both rudders and damaged the hull when the boat ran aground on a shoal at a speed of roughly 19 knots. Just before Christmas the boat was salvaged and loaded aboard a geared Maersk Line container ship.
Recently, Chris Nicholson, the team skipper, announced that the $6 million boat is in better-than-expected condition and that the team plans to rebuild it at an Italian shipyard and reenter the race as it approaches the homestretch in Lisbon sometime in late May. “I feel a little daunted by what’s in front of us, but at the same time, I welcome our chance to get back in the race,” Nicholson said from Abu Dhabi, where the remaining six teams hit the starting line bound for Sanya, China, on Jan 3.