Leading yachts in the Round-the-World race are reported to be nearly halfway from South Africa to New Zealand on the second leg of the race.
SV Crewmen working on deck of Gauloises II
SV PAN UP FROM Crewman spinnaker sail
SV & CU Helmsman working broken tiller (2 shots)
CU Broken tiller and name on stern
SV & CU Crewmen working
LV & SV Gauloises II under way (2 shots)
SPORT: YACHT RACING
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Background: Leading yachts in the Round-the-World race are reported to be nearly halfway from South Africa to New Zealand on the second leg of the race. Position reports radioed in by the yachts put the British entry Heath's Condor well out in front. The French yacht, Gauloises II ran into trouble soon after leaving Cape Town.
SYNOPSIS: The yacht, the oldest in the race, and one of the smallest, has been thought by some to be a possible winner on handicap for this leg. However, four days out from Cape Town in South Africa, her skipper Eric Loizeau radioed the race control centre to report that the craft had been hit by a squall and had broken her rudder. The mishap cost Gauloises II valuable days as she made for Port Elizabeth for repairs. The mishap meant that when repairs were completed, the French yacht was five days behind.
Her skipper said that if they met favourable winds he was confident of bridging the gap with the other competitors. Since then, there have been no reports of the yacht's position. It should now be heading for the "Roaring Forties", where conditions are extreme most of the time, with high winds and waves.
A spokesman for the race organisers said the second leg has so far been marked by strong winds, and the smaller yachts were making heavy weather of the changed conditions.