MAPFRE, the overall race leader in the Volvo Ocean Race
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 7, MAPFRE back in the race after a pit-stop
MAPFRE, the overall race leader in the Volvo Ocean Race, finds itself in unfamiliar territory on Friday, re-starting Leg 7 behind the rest of the fleet after a 13-hour pit stop to make repairs.
The MAPFRE crew re-started Leg 7 of the Volvo Ocean Race at 07:10 UTC after stopping near Cape Horn to repair a luff to leech tear in their mainsail as well as earlier damage to their mast track.
"What happened to the mainsail, I think, is a consequence of the problems we've been having since day two or three, where part of the mast track came away from the mast," said skipper Xabi Fernández.
"From then we fought very, very hard in the Southern Ocean, with ratchet straps on the mast and mainsail not working properly.
"Today, as we got close to Cape Horn, we sheeted on a bit harder and a third of the mainsail ripped from side to side and now we have no more choice but to drop the mainsail as we have."
The team was met by members of its shore crew. already in position and on standby in case the team decided to stop to fix the mast track issue.
The repairs were effected as quickly as possible, but MAPFRE rejoins the race in sixth place on a double-point scoring leg, with plenty of work ahead to salvage a result in this difficult Leg 7.