Alex Thomson throws in the towel and withdraws from Vendée Globe


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The Vendée Globe of Alex Thomson and Hugo Boss ends here, the Briton has announced his retirement and sets course for Cape Town where his shore team will be waiting for him in 1,800 miles. The dream of being the first non-French sailor to win the non-stop round-the-world race and assistance remains so, after finishing third in 2013 and second in 2016.

“Unfortunately, a repair is not possible. We therefore accept that this is the end of the race for us. Myself, my team and our partners are obviously deeply disappointed. We believe that the best was yet to come,” was Thomson’s succinct comment.

The boat probably paid the price for the harsh impact of the Theta Depression, but at this point it must be said that in the design of the new Hugo Boss, it is safe to assume that something went wrong. The old Hugo Boss, in which the Briton finished second in 2016, was put under pressure throughout the no-holds-barred world tour and came to the finish line intact. Indeed, it should be recalled that in that case the foil breakage, which in fact prevented Thomson from being able to go on to victory, was caused by a collision with a UFO.

Will Alex try again? We believe and hope so. This Vendée Globe remains an unfinished project for him. The boat’s speed potential is probably still untapped, net of an avoidable structure overhaul that will be done in due course.

Leading the race remains Apivia, a state-of-the-art foiler led by Charlie Dalin, which has a 291-mile lead over the first pursuer, Thomas Ruyant. Well Pedote, 11th, at 579 miles.

Mauro Giuffrè




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