Sailing: Broken sail lets Amro pip Pirates

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The Independent Online

The Pirates of the Caribbean saw a golden opportunity for glory snatched from under their noses in Hayling Bay here yesterday as Mike Sanderson's marauders on ABN Amro 1, won the sixth inshore race of the Volvo round the world event. The black-moustached Pirate skipper, Paul Cayard, had pulled off a tactical masterstroke when he laid claim to the left hand side of the track and sailed towards the eastern end of the island.

It had given his guests, the Olympic rowing champion, James Cracknell, the actor Mackenzie Crook and the boat's "godmother", Lady Gabriella Windsor, something to cheer on a blustery day.

Sanderson had been forced to switch to the right and all was falling into place for Cayard. But problems handling the giant spinnaker led to the boat going out of control, the extra pressure on the sail blew it to smithereens and ABN 1 sailed serenely by.

For Sanderson, the show rolls on. Married on Friday to solo sailor Emma Richards, he has won the race outright with two more legs and an inshore race still to come.

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