One of the world’s best sailors has revealed that her pursuit of a gold medal at the Rio Olympics was hampered by the amount of plastic in the water.
Annalise Murphy won silver for Ireland in the 2016 Games but her efforts were hindered by the amount of rubbish in the Brazilian waters when she was competing.
The 27-year-old Olympian, from Dublin, sets sail from Alicante on Sunday on board the yacht ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’, which has partnered with Sky Ocean Rescue, in the Volvo Ocean Race.
“In Rio there was plastic everywhere in the water, the water was really dirty and full of rubbish,” she told Sky News, as she took part in a pro-am prologue off the coast of Alicante with her 10 team-mates.
“In my second last race I got a plastic bag stuck in my rudder and it cost me three places. The same thing happened to the Finnish girl I was competing against and it cost her 10 places. I was lucky in that I managed to get free and keep going.”
Murphy and the yacht ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’, skippered by Dee Caffari, will travel 45,000 nautical miles and visit 11 countries over the next eight months as part of the gruelling Volvo race.
The yacht will use on-board data gathering equipment to measure water quality and composition, as well as micro-plastics in some of the world’s remotest oceans.
The team is part of the UN Environment’s ‘Clean Seas’ campaign which aims to better understand the issue of plastic pollution in oceans…