The leg win for Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag into their home port of Hong Kong was overshadowed by a collision involving another of the Volvo Ocean Race contestants.

Race control was notified on Saturday by American-flagged Vestas 11th Hour Racing that it, and another vessel, had collided about 40km off the shore of Hong Kong at 6:39am (NZT).

Although the crew reported to be safe, the yacht had suffered "limited damage".

There was no information on the state of the other vessel, however, the online race tracker showed that the 60-foot sloop slowed to less than 4 knots and made no further progress.


Kiwi sailor Tony Mutter is listed as a crew member on the damaged yacht.

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Scallywag, who secured victory of the leg earlier today, had moments were they appeared to be in strong position, but late in the crossing, skipper David Witt and navigator Libby Greenhalgh made the decision to cut the corner.

The team turned to the west earlier than the opposition, who kept pressing north in search of stronger winds.

Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag won the fourth leg in the Volvo Ocean Race. photo / Volvo Ocean Race
Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag won the fourth leg in the Volvo Ocean Race. photo / Volvo Ocean Race

The tradewins failed to provide the expected push the opposition had hoped for, as Scallywag's move paid dividends nearly immediately.

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Although the team lost miles after recovering Alex Gough, who was swept overboard earlier this week, Scallywag returned to racing immediately and extended a nearly 160km lead.

"I was really impressed by the way we operated over the past couple of days," Witt said.

"We had a pretty big lead and then through no fault of our own, about two-thirds of it got taken away. But we stuck to our guns, did what we thought was right and it's worked out."

The win secured Scallywag eight points to move up to fourth place overall.

"It was always going to take us longer than the others to get up to speed as we were the last to enter," Witt said.

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"All teams need a bit of confidence and I think one thing that is underrated in sport is momentum and this will certainly give the Scallywags plenty of that… We're all still learning and we're going to keep getting better as we go on."