Press Release:

Vestas 11th Hour Racing collides with fishing vessel

Vestas 11th Hour Racing, a British Cayman registered vessel with a multinational team competing in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18, collided with a fishing vessel near Hong Kong. The fishing vessel had ten crew members, one of whom was seriously injured in the collision and was subsequently airlifted by the Hong Kong Marine Rescue Coordination Centre (HKMRCC) to a Hong Kong hospital. HKMRCC has since confirmed the death of the crew member. 

On behalf of Vestas 11th Hour Racing and the Volvo Ocean Race, we offer our deepest condolences to the loved ones of the deceased. 

The incident occurred approximately 30 miles from the finish of Leg 4, outside of Hong Kong waters. Race Control at Volvo Ocean Race headquarters was informed of the collision by the team moments after it happened at approximately 17:23 UTC on Friday January 19, 2018 (01:23 local time on Saturday morning). 

The Vestas 11th Hour Racing team issued a Mayday distress call on behalf of the other vessel, alerting HKMRCC and undertook a search and rescue mission. HKMRCC informed Race Control that a commercial vessel in the area was able to rescue nine of the crew and that a tenth crew member was taken by helicopter to hospital. None of the Vestas 11th Hour Racing crew were injured in the collision. 

Vestas 11th Hour Racing and the Volvo Ocean Race are now focused on providing immediate support to those affected by this incident and are co-operating with the authorities in the ongoing investigation.

For more information, please contact:
Anders Riis
External Communications
Tel: +45 4181 3922


Vestas 11th Hour Racing. Led by Charlie Enright and Mark Towill, Vestas and 11th Hour Racing join forces to compete in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race with one simple mission: Achieve exemplary results in sport and be the most sustainable team in the race. This is our opportunity to win the most epic sprint around our fragile planet, whilst showcasing business as a force for good. As experienced organizations and individuals, we understand the need to set a precedent whereby helping our partners and fans, accomplish their sustainable goals. We advocate for effective solutions for a clean atmosphere and marine habitat, harnessing the power of nature for a cleaner tomorrow, and using unparalleled knowledge to empower collaborative, systematic change for our environment. Let’s lead sustainability, together.

Vestas is the energy industry’s global partner on sustainable energy solutions. We design, manufacture, install, and service wind turbines across the globe, and with 87 GW of wind turbines in 76 countries, we have installed more wind power than anyone else. Through our industry-leading smart data capabilities and unparalleled more than 73 GW of wind turbines under service, we use data to interpret, forecast, and exploit wind resources and deliver best-in-class wind power solutions. Together with our customers, Vestas’ more than 22,700 employees are bringing the world sustainable energy solutions to power a bright future.

11th Hour Racing, a program of The Schmidt Family Foundation, establishes strategic partnerships within the sailing and maritime communities to promote collaborative, systemic change benefitting the health of our ocean – one degree at a time. Since 2010, 11th Hour Racing has been harnessing the power of sport with an innovative and comprehensive approach through three primary areas of engagement: grants, partnerships, and ambassadors.