Deadly Volvo yacht race 'like a slalom': competitor

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HONG KONG Teams competing in the Volvo Ocean Race had to slalom their way around numerous fishing boats while approaching Hong Kong on the fourth leg of the journey, French sailor Franck Cammas told AFP, after a collision left one Chinese fisherman dead.

The gruelling 5,800-nautical mile stage from Melbourne, Australia, to Hong Kong was won by local group Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag in a historic victory. But news that a rival team had crashed into a Chinese fishing boat cast a cloud over celebrations.

Nine people were rescued following the accident on Saturday, which tore a hole in the side of the American-Danish team Vestas 11th Hour Racing's boat, and sank the fishing vessel.

Hong Kong police said a 50-year-old man from China who was in charge of the fishing boat was airlifted to hospital but pronounced dead on arrival.

All Vestas crew members were safe but the incident forced the team to officially retire from the fourth leg.- AFP