A SAILOR who was at the centre of a dramatic rescue after being thrown overboard when a massive storm hit the Clipper Round the World Race says he's “happy to be alive”.

Following Derry~Londonderry~Doire’s dramatic North Pacific rescue operation yesterday, crew member Andrew Taylor is making a good recovery, according to the race's Gosport based organizers.

Speaking from the middle of the Pacific Ocean, skipper Sean McCarter has also confirmed that the 46-year-old Andrew is in good spirits and has been chatting away with his crew, and whilst clearly shocked.

He said: "He is quite happy to be alive I think.

“He was quite concerned yesterday that we might divert to drop him off. I told him not to worry, that there was nowhere to drop him off to.

"I was joking obviously, as even out here in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, we always options available to us if he was in real danger, but it’s a great sign that he is getting better and in a good state of mind.

“Andrew is receiving medication and is under the excellent care of our paramedic crew member, Susie Redhouse, who will continue to monitor him closely over the next 24 hours.

“We expect him to stay in his bunk to rest for the next day. Gladly, his leg doesn't seem to be giving him as much pain so hopefully it is not as serious as we thought to begin with and is just an impact injury from where he hit the starboard rudder that will quickly heal.”

The incident happened on Monday as the 12 strong fleet race from China to San Francisco.

Clipper Race chairman and racing legend Sir Robin Knox-Johnston has sent a personal message to the boats to remind them of their safety training.

It says: “This is a reminder of two basic points from your training.

“Always clip on, and check that you are clipped on by pulling on the tether to ensure it is fast before going further…Human life is far too precious to be thrown away by a moment’s forgetfulness.

“Sail safely, and please stay aboard.”

Derry~Londonderry~Doire and the rest of the 12-strong Clipper Race fleet is due into San Francisco on April 11.

The Clipper 2013-14 Race left London on September 1 2013 and returns to St Katharine Docks next to Tower Bridge on Saturday 12 July 2014.