Eight Irish people were among crew rescued from a sinking racing yacht after it struck rocks in Indonesian waters.

There were 16 people on board the Cork Clipper when it struck a rock near the island of Gosong Mampango in the Java Sea, 200 miles northeast of Jakarta, yesterday.

The stranded sailors abandoned the stricken yacht in life rafts and headed for nearby rocks.

They were picked up by two competing yachts the California Clipper and Team Finland.

All of those on board the Cork Clipper are reported to be safe and well.

The 68-foot yacht is believed to be lying on its side and has suffered damage to the hull.

Falmouth Coastguard raised the alarm with international rescue services after being contacted by Team Finland at around 8pm Irish time last night.

Both the Cork Clipper and Team Finland are taking part in the 35,000- mile Clipper Round the World Race.

The race started in Humberside last September.

The 16 crew on board the Cork Clipper consists of eight Irish, five British, two Australians and one Chinese national.