So far in this Vendee Globe there has been relatively few broken boats in the first two weeks. A welcome hiatus that has changed for the worse today.
In the last Vendee (2013) 4 yachts retired in the first week alone with 3 being dismasted and one suffering a cracked hull. So far in this edition one has returned to port and restarted and one has not retired yet but is sailing back toward Les Sables-d’Olonne with a broken masthead where they will retire. There has been few incidents on the yachts as well apart from a few crunched ribs and banged heads.
That all changed yesterday when Bertrand de Broc on MACSF retired after diving on his hull to see what damage had been caused in a collision off the Portuguese . It is reported that a large delaminated piece of material was hanging from his hull causing vibration and a noise so loud that he could still hear it through noise canceling headphones.
Also yesterday British Race favourite Alex Thomson’s luck ran out when he hit something in the water that has destroyed his starboard foil. The scheds over the next few hours showed him lose a 50nm chunk of the lead he had ground out over the past couple of days. Currently he is retaining the lead. Just.
Those of you that watched the video I posted the other day where Hugo Boss engineering director Ross Daniel talked about the foils you may remember he suggested that the boat would lose only a small percentage of speed if it lost its foils. Its Not What the Forecast Said
The good news is that it still has the port one and it is expected that most of the sailing across the southern ocean will be on starboard tack. But Don’t take my word for it, lets hear it from the horses mouth.
In other yachting news Land Rover BAR have won the entire LV challenger series. This, I think, means they take a point into the AC knockout next year. I will check it out.