After incurring damage to the starboard rudder of his boat, British sailor Alex Thomson has ceased racing in the Vendée Globe and is now sailing his boat towards Cape Town.
Thomson last night disconnected the starboard rudder and has since been sailing the yacht with just one rudder. After assessing the situation today, the skipper and his team have decided that the only course of action is to cease racing and sail the boat to Cape Town.
Thomson said: “Unfortunately, a repair is not possible. 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. We believe the best was yet to come in this race”.
The incident occurred on what was Thomson’s 19th day of racing in the round-the-world Vendée Globe yacht race, which began on Sunday 8thNovember from Les Sables-d’Olonne on France’s west coast.
Thomson is currently approximately 1,800 nautical miles from Cape Town and it is expected to take the skipper around seven days to make the journey. He’ll do so without the use of his starboard rudder and so will proceed safely and cautiously. Thomson’s technical team will travel to Cape Town to meet the yacht upon arrival.