The Team Philips project is over
The boat was abandoned 700 miles west of Ireland on the 10th December, and subsequently tracked using the boat's onboard satellite and position fixing systems. Contact was lost on the 19th December and the subsequent aerial search revealed nothing.
Pete Goss commented: "This is a very sad day for all of us and I would like to thank all of our sponsors for their unfailing commitment over the last three years. Without them none of what we have achieved would have been possible.
"For me, it has been a privilege to have been custodian of such a special dream which has touched so many. I could not have wished for a more dignified and supportive team who, together, have been through so much. If anything has kept us going during the hard times and made the good times so rewarding it is the incredible public support that we enjoy. This is best embodied by the hull names and volunteers who have given so much to help others participate in our adventure.
"Accepting the risks we chose to drive in the fast lane. Defeat, however, sometimes has to be accepted. As a team we can look it in the eye knowing that we gave it our all. We dared to dream and we are proud of what we achieved."
In a common statement, the sponsors said: "Team Philips was an unique project and at the cutting edge of technology. In such a pioneering yacht there is always an element of risk, which we acknowledged from the outset. By the nature of our businesses, we believe in pushing the boundaries of technology and taking prudent risks.
"The sponsorship has delivered many of its objectives. The craft was innovative and beautiful. She captivated all who saw her and evoked emotions that we are all proud to have been associated with."
Although the project has come to an end, if the boat is subsequently found, the sponsors have agreed to take whatever action seems appropriate at that time, given the condition in which she is discovered.