4th place competitor in the Velux 5 Oceans, Graham Dalton has hit a UFO, damaging his rudder 13/3/07

At 1930 UTC on Monday 12 March the watchkeeper in the Velux 5 Oceans race office noticed that Graham Dalton’s boat A Southern Man – AGD had stopped. Approximately one hour later Dalton phoned into the race office to report that he had hit a UFO in the water; it was pitch black so he was uncertain what it was but it had caused serious damage to one of his rudders.

The damage sustained had forced him to cut the cassette away and remove the rudder blade. Dalton is sailing approximately 15 knots of east-southeasterly breeze just over 150 miles off the coast of Brazil. The Kiwi skipper is currently assessing the damage to his boat and is in constant communication with his boat builder to establish a method to stabilize the remaining rudder so that he can recover steerage.