Forced to abandon the Transat Jacques Vabre on November 3, after striking a 340-mile OFNI in the western Canaries, Alex Thomson and Neal McDonald arrived Friday at Mindelo in Cape_Vert. At the 60-foot "Hugo Boss", the two sailors traveled more than 800 miles without keel …
This Friday, November 8, shortly after 8 pm UTC, the British skippers Alex Thomson and Neal McDonald arrived safely in the Cape Verde Islands. The two sailors had been forced to abandon the Transat Jacques Vabre after their new Imoca struck a 25-knot OFNI. Faced with the extent of the damage and especially the threat of further damage to the structure of the boat, the two skippers had dropped the keel 3.5 tons.
They then traveled more than 800 miles without keels, centering the weights in the middle of the boat and maintaining some stability with the two huge foils.
"It's a setback"
This morning, Thomson and McDonald were greeted by members of their technical team in Sao Vincente, Cape Verde. Together, they brought the Imoca safely to the port.
"It was a pretty scary experience for both of us and we are very happy to be safely on the ground with the team. The next steps are to take the boat out of the water for a thorough assessment of the damage. We will then take the boat back to England so that we can begin the necessary repairs, with the aim of getting back on the water as quickly as possible, "said Alex Thomson. This is of course a setback, but the team will do everything in its power to move quickly. With regard to our goal of winning the Vendée Globe in 2020-2021, that does not change anything. This remains the only goal of our team.