Cornwall

Cornish-based sailor Sam Goodchild breaks world record

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Media captionSam Goodchild spent 30 days at sea

A Cornish-based sailor has arrived back home in Falmouth after winning the second leg of the Global Ocean Race from South Africa to New Zealand.

Sam Goodchild, 22, and New Zealand co-skipper, Conrad Colman, 28, were the youngest crew in the race.

After 30 days at sea, the two sailors arrived in Wellington 36 hours ahead of their closest competitors.

Mr Goodchild, who feared at times the sea conditions would break boat, said he "never expected to win".

The Global Ocean Race goes all around the world and is in five legs, starting in Majorca and ending in France.

The two sailors, who only met three days before the start of the race, set out at 8.20:40 GMT on Friday December 30, 2011, to compete in the 7,500 mile (12,070km) second leg from Cape Town, South Africa to Wellington, New Zealand.

They set a new world record after covering 359.1 miles (578km) in 24 hours - smashing the previous distance record on a Class 40 by nine miles (14.5km).

Not plain sailing

Mr Goodchild said to win the race was "a massive shock".

"My first sail in the boat was to the start line and I have only sailed on the boat once, it just happened to be a 7,000 mile (11,265km) race.

"When considering our chances, our aim was to give the top two boats from leg 1 a run for their money, so to be able to lead for over half the race was a pleasant surprise.

"It was a privilege to able to help Conrad to a leg win after what has been a tough nine months for his team."

Image caption Sam Goodchild also won the Artemis Offshore Academy's Scholarship Programme

Mr Goodchild said being single-handed sailors, they were both "quite strong minded and a bit stubborn" and at times communication was "strained" but generally, their two different backgrounds helped each other and "we managed to make it work".

"The last 48 hours was the hardest by a long way, approaching New Zealand we had the roughest sea state we have ever seen," he said.

"There were just short steep waves and the boat just dropped off them.

"It was damage limitation, we had to stop sailing and try and hold the boat in one piece."

Mr Goodchild said he would not be competing in the other legs of the race.

"That was my taste of it - I'm going to quit while I'm ahead".

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