Updated : 11/12/2007 07:37 GMT
Jérémie Beyou, skipper, Delta Dore: “Last night, in the middle of the night, we were sailing downwind, with the wind from about 300 degrees at about 25 knots, with gusts to thirty knots. In about 30 knots of wind, the mast suddenly broke and fell to the deck in two parts. It was quite violent because the waves were about 5 metres but fortunately we were both inside the boat, so no one was injured which is the main thing. We put on the survival suits and had to go on deck to cut everything from the boat because the mast was destroying the deck and roof. So we had no choice but to cut it all away.
“We are very sad and it’s a big disappointment. It was a great race. We weren’t pushing too hard so we really are very disappointed. But nobody is hurt, we’re OK, so that’s the main thing.
“Sidney was at the navigation station and I was sleeping, but not really sleeping. We both heard this big crack and I asked Sidney, ‘What is that and he told me, ‘I don’t know but it’s a major thing’.
“He had a quick look outside and he told me, ‘It’s the mast, it’s the mast!’
“I said, ‘Oh no, it’s not possible, it’s not the mast.’
“That’s the way it happened…”
Jérémie says the team will attempt to send some video and photos back later in the day.