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Dongfeng reaches Argentina port to repair broken mast

March 31, 2015

Dongfeng Race Team reached dry land in Argentina on Tuesday, just over 24 hours after the mast broke on the Volvo Ocean Race co-leader in the southern Pacific Ocean.

Frenchman Kevin Escoffier cut off a ragged sail and the top of the 30-meter (100-foot) mast to prevent further damage, and the yacht was nursed to Ushuaia.

There, the team will decide whether to refit a new mast or have the boat transported directly to the next port, Itajai, Brazil, for repairs. If the team takes the former option, it could rejoin the fifth leg, and potentially earn two more points. The sixth leg from Itajai to the United States starts on April 19.

The top section of the mast broke in 30 knots of wind early Monday, about 200 nautical miles from Cape Horn. Nobody was injured.

Chinese-backed Dongfeng leads the race with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing on eight points. Abu Dhabi retook the stage lead on Tuesday.

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