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The Race..Team Adventure loses another crew member

by Keith Taylor on 18 Feb 2001
With repair work nearing completion, Cam Lewis, announced today that another crewmember would leave the boat due to back injuries. Lewis also said that his 110-foot catamaran Team Adventure would delay its departure by up to 24 hours to complete final outfitting.

Frenchman Yann Eliés, 26, was advised by doctors in Wellington to rest and
recuperate ashore after they diagnosed a herniated disk in his lower back on
Friday. Eliés, also known as the 'Petit Breton', had been taking
painkillers for back pains for a week before the boat reached Wellington.

'We are extremely sorry to lose Yann,' said skipper Cam Lewis. 'He is a
valuable member of the crew and a great shipmate. We fully understand and
support his decision not to sail with us on the way home and we look forward
to having him join us on future races.'

Eliés has raced in the Figaro solo offshore series as well as the Mini
Transat transatlantic race.

'It is a hard decision for me because I really want to finish The Race,'
said Eliés. 'This will be the first time in my life that I have not finished
a race. It will be very hard to see my fellow crew leaving Wellington
without me. However, I must look to the future. Half a race is not enough. I
will be coming back to race again and to pass Cape Horn with my head high. I
don't want to round the famous Cape lying flat in my bunk.'

The American catamaran, currently placed fourth in the Race of the
Millennium non-stop race around the world, will be eligible to leave
Wellington at 12:53 pm today, Sunday, at the end of a 60-hour penalty period
for accepting outside assistance. The boat called at Wellington for
additional repairs to the main crossbeam, originally damaged when the boat
struck a rogue wave in the Southern Ocean west of Cape Town, South Africa.

Four of the original crew of 14 left the boat in Cape Town. Two were
prevented by injuries from continuing. Two others made personal decisions
not to continue. Race rules do not permit crew substitutions. Lewis said a
crew of nine could safely handle the boat, although some maneuvers might
take a little longer.

Today, as boatbuilders complete their work on the crossbeam and the crew
finished up myriad outfitting and maintenance tasks, Lewis said his team
would take the extra time to make the boat fully ready for the rigors of the
Southern Ocean and the approach to Cape Horn.

'The boatbuilders have done an outstanding job and will finish within the
penalty period,' Lewis said. 'However we still have a lot of cleanup to
complete, including restoring the forward trampoline, part of which was
removed to give the builders access to the damaged area.

'Our crew is reduced in size and it is important that we have the boat in
tip-top shape for the voyage around the other half of the world. Our nearest
competition is nearly 6,000 miles ahead and in another ocean, and there is
nothing to be gained from pushing too hard at this stage.'

Yesterday visitors and sightseers crowded all day along the dock where Team
Adventure was berthed. They watched as the crew continued to dry out foul
weather gear and bedding, stow fresh fruit and vegetables, and replace
several key pieces of running gear. Technicians from France Telecom
completed work on replacing the boat's Satellite B communications unit. For
several hours at midday, a giant crane lifted the 150-foot wing mast two
feet in the air while crew cleaned up and lubricated the rotator ball at its

Team Adventure is a partner in a pair of innovative web sites., the web site of the National Geographic
Society, is the educational partner in the collaborative venture. The
National Public Radio affiliates WBUR in Boston, MA, at, and
WRNI in Providence, RI, at, are the exclusive radio media
partners., the leading global online careers site and the flagship brand
of TMP Worldwide (NASDAQ: 'TMPW'; ASX: 'TMP'), has signed a Sponsor Level
Partnership - becoming the first major sponsor of the team.

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