Derek Hatfield is back at sea and chasing the rest of the field after completing repairs at Les Sables D'Olonne, France.
The Spirit of Canada team, with a smaller budget than many other groups, received vital assistance from the technical staff of Bahrain Team Pindar.
Most of the field is now near the Canary Islands, off the coast of Africa, but the race has a long way to go and nothing can be taken for granted. Four boats have officially retired from the race.
Here was the news Canadians had been waiting for, as communicated in the Spirit of Canada's web site by Patianne Verburgh:
"It’s official, Derek crossed the start line once again after making repairs to Algimouss Spirit of Canada at 02.00hr local time in France. Derek is unbelievable lucky to be able to repair the boat once again and commence racing. The repairs were made possible because of the involvement of Bahrain Team Pindar’s Technical Team and help from Andrew Pindar in particular. We did not have the resources to do this ourselves.
"Derek is currently doing 10 kts of boat speed with 23598 nm to finish. What a Herculean effort this has been for him; he continues to make us very proud."
Photo courtesy of http://www.vendéeglobe.org/