Live updates

Clipper Race sailor Sarah Young laid to rest at sea

Sarah Young was buried at sea early on Sunday morning. Credit: Clipper Race

Amateur sailor Sarah Young, who died after being swept into the Pacific Ocean while competing in the global Clipper Race, has been laid to rest at sea.

As she was laid to rest by her team at 1am on Sunday, sailors aboard the other 11 yachts gathered together on their individual vessels and marked the solemn moment with a minute's silence.

Three readings were delivered, including the ballad Sea Fever by the English poet John Masefield.

Miss Young's parents are both dead and she has no siblings. Race organisers said they have been in touch with her elderly aunt in New Zealand who gave the ceremony her blessing.

British sailor Sarah Young will be buried at sea

Sarah Young died while competing in a global yacht race. Credit: Clipper Ventures/PA Wire

Amateur sailor, Sarah Young, who died while competing in a global yacht race will be buried at sea, organisers said.

Ms Young, 40, was washed into the Pacific Ocean by a large wave as she tended to the mainsail aboard the IchorCoal vessel during the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race.

Race organisers said they had permission from Ms Young's partner and family to bury her at sea.

Ms Young's parents are both deceased and she has no siblings. Race organisers contacted her elderly aunt in New Zealand who gave the ceremony her blessing.

Following guidance from the doctor and our medical advisers and consultation with the Maritime Coastguard Agency, plus Sarah's partner, friends, family and the crew, we have decided to proceed with a burial at sea as soon as weather conditions permit, because of the long time it will take to reach closest landfall.

– Clipper race organisers

Her body is expected to be laid to rest at sea on Saturday evening in a ceremony which will draw on centuries-old maritime traditions.

The yacht has been sent details of the burial at sea ceremony which has been used for centuries by mariners, along with some personal readings from her loved ones, and will advise the race office with at least two hours' notice when they are ready to proceed.

We appreciate that this will be a difficult and emotional time for the crew, the entire fleet and the whole Clipper Race family. Our thoughts remain with them all and with Sarah's partner, family and friends at this difficult time.

Sarah was much loved, and will be missed deeply by all who knew her. On behalf of her family and friends, they have asked us to request that they are now allowed to grieve and remember Sarah in peace.

– Clipper race organisers

Advertisement

Clipper sailor was not tethered to yacht when she died

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston founded the round the world race in 1995. Credit: PA

A round the world sailor who was swept to her death was not tethered to her yacht, it has emerged.

Sarah Young, 40, was the second crew member to have died on the vessel in the last six months.

The deaths are the first in the Clipper race in 20 years.

Race founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston insisted safety was "drummed into" sailors before they took part in the challenge.

He told the BBC: "The only person who can tell us why she wasn't tethered is Sarah herself, and of course she never will.

"Just not clipping on takes about three seconds and it's cost her her life."

Ms Young is thought to have died from either drowning or exposure.

Her death is now being investigated by race organisers.

Clipper competitor: 'Extremely sad news about Sarah'

Sarah Young died while taking part in the Clipper World Yacht Race. Credit: PA

The skipper of the GREAT Britain yacht, which is taking part in the Clipper round the world race, has paid tribute to a sailor on a competing team, who has died after swept away.

Sarah Young, 40, was swept away in high winds in the mid-north Pacific on Friday.

Peter Thornton said: "Extremely sad news about Sarah and we are all quite shocked and suddenly acutely aware of where and what we are in this world.

"I cannot imagine what IchorCoal and her family are going through right now so our thoughts are with all who knew and loved Sarah."

Crew member pays tribute to UK sailor

A crew member of the IchorCoal boat has paid tribute to Sarah Young, the second sailor to die on the vessel during the Clipper Race, describing her as "witty", "ballsy" and "caring".

Elliotte Ashcroft said on Facebook she was "utterly shocked by the devastating news".

Asked by a friend if tragedy had struck her team Ms Ashcroft replied: "Yes. Again."

Miss Young's death comes six months after that of Andrew Ashman, 49, who was killed on the same vessel after being knocked unconscious while sailing off the Portuguese coast.

Advertisement

British woman dies during Clipper World Yacht Race

A British woman has died while taking part in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

Sarah Young died while taking part in the Clipper World Yacht Race. Credit: onEdition / PA Wire/PA Images

Sarah Young, 40, was washed into the sea by a wave n the mid-north Pacific as she tended to the mainsail aboard the IchorCoal boat and was swept away in strong winds. She was not tethered to the vessel.

Miss Young's body was recovered by her crew who tried to resuscitate her, but she never regained consciousness, a race spokeswoman said.

Race organisers said a full investigation will now be carried out, as is standard practice, in cooperation with the appropriate authorities.

On behalf of everyone at Clipper Ventures, I am deeply saddened by the loss of Sarah. She was a very popular and integral member of the Clipper Race family and knew our boats well, having sailed with us since London last summer.

– Clipper Race founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston

Ms Young, who was a keen adventurer, had wanted to take part in the race for a number of years and had celebrated her birthday days before setting sail from London at the end of last August.

Her death comes six months after that of Andrew Ashman, 49, from Kent who was killed on the same vessel after being knocked unconscious while sailing off the Portuguese coast.

His death was the first fatality in the history of the event which was established almost 20 years ago.

Sir Robin takes third place in transatlantic race

Credit: Breschi/Clipper Round the World Yacht Race

Veteran British sailing legend and grandfather-of-five sir Robin Knox-Johnson has claimed third place in his class in a solo transatlantic race at the age of 75 - 45 years after he became the first man to non-stop circumnavigate the globe alone.

Sir Robin, who founded the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, returned to his solo ocean-racing roots by entering his Open 60 yacht Grey Power into the Route du Rhum competition which started on November 2nd in St Malo, France.

Sir Robin came third in the Rhum class as he crossed the finish line at Pointe a Pitre at 4.52pm local time/8.52pm GMT after 20 days, 7 hours, 52 minutes and 22 seconds at sea. Credit: Breschi/Clipper Round the World Yacht Race

The pensioner, who was the oldest participant, last competed in the 3,542-mile race from St Malo, France, to Guadeloupe in the Caribbean in 1982 in his 70ft catamaran Olympus.

And this is his first solo race since his Velux 5 Oceans circumnavigation in 2006-7, which he also sailed in Grey Power.

Sir Robin came third in the Rhum class as he crossed the finish line at Pointe a Pitre at 4.52pm local time/8.52pm GMT after 20 days, 7 hours, 52 minutes and 22 seconds at sea.

He managed to hold off rival Wilfrid Clerton, who was 20 miles behind.

Transplant woman joins ocean race

Double-lung transplant patient Justine Laymond. Credit: PA

A double-lung transplant patient has taken on more than 2,000 miles of ocean in one of the toughest legs of a round-the-world yacht race.

Justine Laymond, 39, endured exhaustion, tropical storms and rough seas in the Atlantic during her four weeks competing in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

She decided to join a relay team of transplant patients, surgeons and specialist nurses in the race to raise awareness of the difference an organ transplant can make to a seriously ill person.

Her life was transformed by a double-lung transplant she underwent in 2006 after suffering 15 lung collapses and being in a coma for three weeks.

Her achievement at sea was something she said she could never dream of back then, but that her experience has taught her to "live life for today".