Ian Walker's Green Dragon suffererd a broken boom as the fleet continued to wrestle with strong gusts and treacherous seas as the second leg of the race to India turned spiteful.
Just before 11:00 GMT Walker sent the following email to the Duty Office at race headquarters in Portsmouth alerting race organisers to the situation on board.
“I am sorry to report that we have just broken our boom in a 50-knot squall,” the message read. “We are in the process of recovering the parts. The situation is under control with no harm or risk to anyone. We are carrying on downwind.”
Their position at the time was 39:41.17S , 40:28.73E, 1,500 miles from Mauritius.
Walker and the team were weighing up whether to continue under jury rig to Cochin or head for Mauritius where a replacement boom could be fitted.
The past 24 hours have been the most testing in the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race so far. Green Dragon's latest misadventure came after they survived a spectacular Chinese gybe yesterday.
Ian Walker's men were not alone in sustaining damage as the wind speeds consistently hit the +40-knot mark and seas rose to between 10 and 12 metres.
A number of boats reported structural damage and shredded sails.
In spite of the confused sea state, boat speeds hover around the 20-knot mark, with Ericsson 4 achieving 490 nm, the highest 24-hour run.
The fleet is effectively split in two, 115 nm across a north/south divide, with Telefonica Blue and Telefonica Black, PUMA and Delta Lloyd in the north, and Team Russia, the Ericsson twins and Green Dragon in the south.
Green Dragon Racing Site for additional news on team's progress.