Team Sanya were back in action yesterday, Thursday 8th December, out for their one training session before the InPort race in Cape Town which starts on Saturday 10th December at 1500 hours local time. The team suffered a major blow in Leg One when they suffered significant damage to their hull and had to retire from the leg and ship their boat to Cape Town.

The boat arrived in Cape Town on a Maersk Line ship on Wednesday 30th November and in under a week the team has managed to repair the damage and get the boat ready to race again. This type of boat build repair project would normally take around 3-4 weeks to complete so this dynamic team have yet again surprised many through their determination and focus on getting the job done.

Mike Sanderson, CEO/Skipper of Team Sanya, commented on the team’s achievements,

"What the Team has achieved over the last two weeks is nothing short of outstanding. Nick Bice, David Duff and our Team Sanya Shore Crew have been unbelievable and equally the guys we brought in from Salthouse Boat-builders and Ashdown Marine whom we knew would move heaven and earth have all pulled something off that on paper just wasn’t really achievable.

When we launched the boat yesterday just over a week since the ship sailed into Cape Town with basically what was a whole new bow on the yacht from the waterline down, it felt as special as when we first launched ‘Sanya Lan’ back in the UK last August. For sure it feels like we have been given a second shot at the race by all the good work that has happened. All I can say is a massive THANK YOU from us all.“

The team issued a slightly revised crew line-up for the next InPort race and Leg Two as listed below:


Mike Sanderson Skipper NZL

Cameron Dunn Watch Captain NZL

Richard Mason Watch Captain NZl

Aksel Magdahl Navigator NOR

Ryan Houston* Helmsman/Trimmer NZL

David Swete* Helmsman/Trimmer NZL

David Rolfe Helmsman/Trimmer NZL

Teng Jiang He Grinder/Trimmer CHN

Bert Schandevyl* Bowman BEL

Jared Henderson Bowman/Trimmer NZL

Andres Soriano Media crew member ESP

Two new sailors have been added to the line-up as well as a role change in Richard Mason’s role which was announced as Watch Captain in recognition of his extensive experience. This is Richard’s 4th Volvo Ocean Race and his contribution to Team Sanya to date has been significant.

David Rolfe (Dingo) is a new addition to the team in the role of Helmsman/Trimmer. David’s experience includes three previous Volvo Ocean Races : Swedish Match, SEB and Ericsson. David also has extensive America’s Cup, Maxi Boat and TP 52 experience as well as countless offshore campaigns. His trimming, driving and extensive sailmaking skills will be a huge asset to Team Sanya.

Also added to the team is Jared Henderson (Beach) who is replacing Andy Meiklejohn who is recovering from a broken foot sustained in Leg One. Beach has extensive experience including doing the bow on Merit Cup in the 1996/97 race and many years on the World Match Racing Circuit, America’s Cup programs and for years running the TP52 and America’s Cup Challenger Artemis. Although Jared had moved back in recent years to spending more time in the pit and trimming, his ability as an all rounder that is also a world class bowman makes him a great Volvo sailor.

Mike welcomed the new team members and added his views on the latest line-up:

"It is never nice when one of your guys gets injured. Andy sustained a badly broken ankle on the first night out of Alicante, but I can now confirm that, as of yesterday, his cast has been removed and he is on the road to recovery with physio and sports massage to get back to fighting fitness. These things do take time though and so we are incredibly fortunate to have been able to get a replacement bowman/all rounder with the experience of Jared Henderson, he will be a great asset to the team.

Then our second addition is David Rolfe. David and I used to be sail makers together so I know him well, although I haven’t done that much sailing with him I have done plenty against him and know him as a formidable opponent, so I know he is fast!! His all-round ability combined with an amazing work ethic around the boat will be good for us as we battle to get Team Sanya back to where she should be for the Leg Two “mixing it up”. It’s great to be able to welcome both these guys to the sailing team and I look forward to racing with them to Abu Dhabi.

The Team Sanya Shore Team won the DHL Shore Team Award for Leg One yesterday at the prizegiving. In acknowledgement of the epic mission to get their boat back into the Volvo Ocean Race after suffering structural failure in the first six hours of Leg 1, it was decided Sanya’s shore crew were the most deserving of the award. Accepting the award on behalf of the team’s shore crew, COO & Operations Director David Duff said: “We had a bit of a mission to say the least. We have had a great team here and we were back out sailing today. We had confidence in our team and it all came together.”

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