'Brutal' conditions test Auckland-bound Volvo crews
Sea sickness and waves as high as five metres are making life difficult for all six teams in the early stages of leg four of the Volvo round the world race from Sanya, China, to Auckland, New Zealand.
Conditions have been described as "brutal" as crews struggle to throttle back their Volvo Open 70s to avoid teeth-rattling crash landings off the backs of big waves left over from several days of gale force winds.
A drifting start in the wind shadow of Sanya's towering mountains belied the testing weather the crews found themselves in just hours later, after the wind and sea state quickly turned to nasty with 5,220 miles to the finish.
Drama, too, at the start of the fourth Royal Ocean Race Club's Caribbean 600. Low cloud enveloped Antigua and a vicious squall caused a torrential downpour. With the wind gusting up to 20 knots, crews were scrambling for wet weather gear. Once the squall had passed, bright sunshine lit up the race course.
There are 39 boats in nine classes with the fight for line honours expected to go to the defending 90-foot Rambler, entered by the American George David, but a strong challenge for the overall winner’s trophy is being brought by the British-based Niklas Zennstrom in his 72-foot Rán.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal are so close to winning the Premier League, but sometimes Arsene Wenger holds them back, says Jamie Carragher
Arsenal transfer news: Tomas Rosicky and Mathieu Flamini set for showdown summer talks over future
David Beckham reveals secret of his success: I 'stayed in to watch Match of the Day' rather than go out with friends on a Saturday night
Real Madrid vs Juventus preview: Juventus know they must attack to match past European glory
Two new members of Floyd Mayweather's The Money Team blag their way into entourage to celebrate to celebrate with Justin Bieber
- 2 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 4 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
- 5 Ryan Gosling posts tribute to 'Ryan Gosling Won't Eat His Cereal' creator Ryan McHenry
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally