Seven round-the-world racing yachts now on 18-day journey to HK

Sports | 3 Jan 2018

The fourth leg of the Volvo Ocean Race got under way yesterday, with the seven yachts in the round-the-world odyssey leaving Melbourne on an 18-day run to Hong Kong.

The stage is a 10,740-kilometer race with a need to dodge many islands. And "there's going to be someone next to you the whole way," said Phil Harmer on US-Danish yacht Vestas, third overall.

Spanish team Mapfre won the brutal Southern Ocean stage from Cape Town to Melbourne, arriving on Christmas Eve ahead of China's Dongfeng and Vestas. Mapfre also won the second leg from Lisbon for the overall lead in an 11-stage race to The Hague, ending about June 25.

Blair Tuke, a Rio gold medalist on Mapfre, aims to make history as the first person to win sailing's "triple crown" - the Olympics, America's Cup and the Volvo. This race is longest in the event's 44 years, covering eight months and 83,340 km.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

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