An International rescue effort got underway last night as one of the Clipper Round the world yachts went aground with all crew including five British citizens, abandoning ship.
Falmouth Coastguard raised the alarm with international rescue services after being alerted to a sinking racing yacht in the Java Sea, 200 miles North East of Jakarta.
At 8pm Wednesday 13th January, Falmouth Coastguard was contacted by another Clipper racing yacht Team Finland reporting that the vessel Cork Clipper had gone aground and struck rocks near the small Indonesian island Gosong Mampango with the 16 crew taking to life rafts.
Team Finland was in VHF radio contact with the stricken vessel. As winds were increasing, the crew abandoned Cork Clipper to a rocky outcrop.
From there, they used the life rafts to transfer to two of their sister vessels in the race; California Clipper and Team Finland which have taken eight crew each safely onboard.
The next port of call for the race vessels is in Indonesia in approximately 48 hours and 410 miles away.
Falmouth Coastguard raised the alarm with the Indonesian authorities at the Maritime Rescue Centre in Jakarta as well as the Australian Maritime Rescue Centre in Canberra on Wednesday evening.
Both the Cork Clipper and Team Finland are 68 foot yachts taking part in the 35,000 mile Clipper Round the World Race.
The ten strong Clipper fleet began the race on September 13th from Humber. This leg of the race is from Geraldton, Western Australia to Singapore. The 16 crew on board Cork Clipper consist of five British, eight Irish, two Australian and one Chinese national.