Alex Thomson's bid for Vendee Globe glory ended on Saturday when the British skipper had to retire with a damaged boat.
Thomson, one of the favourites to win the solo round-the-world race, is now nursing his Hugo Boss vessel back to port in Cape Town after disconnecting the starboard rudder on Friday night.
"Unfortunately, a repair is not possible," Thomson told the organisers.
"We therefore accept that this will be the end of the race for us. Myself, my team and our partners are of course deeply disappointed."
Thomson, from Bangor in north Wales, is 1,800 nautical miles from Cape Town with the journey expected to take him a week.
Third in 2012/2013 and runner-up in 2016/2017 the signs were encouraging in his bid to become the first non-French skipper to win the Vendee when he took a commanding lead last week.
But that quickly evaporated when his multi-million pound foil-equipped boat suffered structural damage last weekend around 800 miles east of Rio de Janeiro, dropping him down the placings.
This is the third time in five attempts at the Vendee that the 46-year-old skipper has failed to finish.