SYDNEY (AP) — Eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats XI has been forced to retire from the Sydney to Hobart yacht race for the second straight year after suffering damage to a hydraulic ram.
The 100-foot supermaxi was leading the race by around 8 miles and was several hours inside its 2012 race record early Tuesday morning when skipper Mark Richards made the decision to retire. The fleet of 88 yachts which left Sydney on Monday has been reduced to 84 after the additional withdrawals of Freyja, Dare Devil and Patrice.
Supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL now leads the race by about 15 miles and is also inside the race record as the fleet sails down the east coast of Victoria.
Maserati is in third spot.