Vendée Globe Day 7: Beyou’s emotional return to Les Sables

by Vendée Globe 14 Nov 19:24 UTC 13 November 2020 -371a066.jpg” /> Jérémie Beyou (Charal) returns to Les Sables d’Olonne in the Vendée Globe © Olivier Blanchet / Alea #VG2020

On a chill, grey November afternoon a drawn and disappointed Jérémie Beyou was touched by the size and warmth of the welcome afforded to the French skipper on his premature return to Les Sables d’Olonne with his damaged Charal.

Forced to return 600 miles back to the start port after his IMOCA was damaged on the third day of racing, hundreds of local fans turned out to see the 44 year old return down the famous channel. At a brief, carefully choreographed, distanced reunion with selected media, Beyou made it clear he wanted to return to the race course if the damage to his boat can be 100% repaired.

“If technically it can be done, the plan is to go. That is the objective.” Stated an emotional Beyou beside his black and silver hulled Charal. “I really want to go, that is not the issue, I want to maintain this frame of mind. I will be 3,000 miles behind so it is no longer a race, but we will see.”

Underlining the urgency to have the boat ready as quickly as possible there was a diver in the water as the IMOCA docked to evaluate the underwater surfaces following the strike by a floating object, the cockpit was quickly covered to facilitate the composite repairs required and the damaged rudder was quickly removed.

“I am convinced that we will try and fix it, but the devil is in the detail. I see that everyone is here. The designers, the builders, all the experts and shore team will collaborate and so we will know within 24 hours. Then we will take a decision.”

The start line closes on Wednesday 18th at 1420hrs, ten days after last Sunday’s start.

“Stopping was brutal for me.” He recalled, his voice shaking at the memory.

“I hope Jeremy re-starts and I hope it is good for him. You just never know on this race.” Commented Mike Golding on the Vendée Globe LIVE show today. Golding was dismasted hours into the 2000-2001 race and restarted a week behind the fleet going on to finish seventh, setting several records in the Southern Ocean, some of which still stand today.

Foilers To Stretch?

At the top of the fleet Jean Le Cam (Yes We Cam!) still holds the lead by 21 nautical miles from Alex Thomson (HUGO BOSS) as the pair open the route into the Ne’ly trade winds.

“Everything is good on board with Alex. He has been resting a bit. He was quite happy through the low (Theta) really. He has seen plenty of big winds before, 50,60 knots, and so if there is a gain to be made he will go there. I think we will start to see the foilers dominate now a bit more. With the winds around 100 degrees true they should be quick for the next 4-5 days.” Commented Ross Daniels, Alex Thomson Racing’s Technical Director this afternoon.

Alex Thomson, Hugo Boss – Vendée Globe – photo © Alex Thomson Racing

Located furthest to the west, Charlie Dalin (Apivia) was the first to gybe followed by Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) and Kevin Escoffier (PRB). 150 miles to the southeast of them, Le Cam and Thomson gybed early in the afternoon on to a more favourable angle and more wind, and therefore a slightly more direct course.

“It’s going to be a long gybe straight into the doldrums and the foilers, who haven’t yet had the chance to show their potential, will finally be able to do it. We should fly” Thomas Ruyant added on Vendée Live, “We will get good reaching angles and start to accelerate.”

But vigilance will be required, explains Sébastien Josse, with three Vendée Globe’s under his belt: “It will not be a cruise with the force of the wind – 20 to 25 knots – and on the crossover of a sail choice between Code 0 and fractional gennaker.”

Vendée Globe Position Report 17H00 UTC 14/11/2020 – photo © #VG2020

Mainsail Damage For Kojiro

In the middle of the afternoon Kojiro Shiraishi’s DMG Mori Global One team reported a rip at the top of the Japanese skipper’s mainsail and damaged battens. After a gybe to exit the Theta depression, Shiraishi, 19th at 3pm, suffered an autopilot malfunction. During a 3rd gybe, his mainsail tore above the 2nd batten. His team commented: “The skipper is not injured and the boat is not in danger. We will be offering different solutions to repair the mainsail and continue the race.”

Kojiro Shiraishi aboard DMG MORY – Vendee Globe – photo © Team DMG MORY

Meantime the peloton has raced off and left a group of competitors in next to no wind, Ari Huusela (Stark), Miranda Merron (Campagne de France), Alexia Barrier (TSE – 4myplanet), Clément Giraud (Compagnie du Lit / Jiliti), Sébastien Destremau (Merci) and Armel Tripon (L’Occitane en Provence). “The corridor of wind between the depression and the front above has narrowed down, and they are in the heart of a windless zone and behind thate there is not much with either.” Christian Dumard, the Vendée Globe meteorologist explained.


Clarence Cremer, Banque Populaire XI: “My mood has completely changed because I am all wound up! I made myself my first hot cup of tea since the start and then I very cleverly clamped it between my legs and knocked the whole lot over. I am suffering quite badly but thankfully was able to speak to the doctor and he has set me a course of creams and pain killers to use. It is not a pretty sight.

“I have always been on the verge of finally saying I am ok and on the Vendée Globe and then this, I mean really, it is really so silly. Please take care at home when you make tea, do not spill it between your legs, it really hurts!

“There you go, I am laughing but I will take great, great care given where I have been burnt, to not get any infection. At least I have an excuse for losing a few places on the ranking! You laugh and you cry, well, that is your normal life on the boat. So, thank you to those who have supported me because it really was very painful, and I did panic and it will continue to annoy me. Now I am taking Doliprane painkillers. So, there is a new adventure ahead of me.”

Overall Results:

Pos Sail No Skipper / Yacht Name DTF (nm) DTL (nm)
1 FRA 01 Jean Le Cam / Yes we Cam ! 22813.5 0
2 GBR 99 Alex Thomson / HUGO BOSS 22828.4 14.9
3 FRA 09 Benjamin Dutreux / OMIA ‑ Water Family 22841 27.4
4 FRA 85 Kevin Escoffier / PRB 22887.2 73.7
5 FRA 1000 Damien Seguin / Groupe APICIL 22895.1 81.5
6 FRA 18 Louis Burton / Bureau Vallée 2 22897.1 83.5
7 MON 10 Boris Herrmann / Seaexplorer ‑ Yacht Club De Monaco 22906.6 93.1
8 FRA 59 Thomas Ruyant / LinkedOut 22916.5 103
9 FRA 17 Yannick Bestaven / Maître Coq IV 22920.2 106.7
10 FRA 4 Sébastien Simon / ARKEA PAPREC 22935 121.4
11 FRA 53 Maxime Sorel / V And B Mayenne 22941 127.5
12 FRA 109 Samantha Davies / Initiatives ‑ Coeur 22941.9 128.4
13 FRA 79 Charlie Dalin / APIVIA 22945.3 131.8
14 FRA 49 Romain Attanasio / Pure ‑ Best Western Hotels and Resorts 22946.1 132.6
15 FRA 6 Nicolas Troussel / CORUM L’Épargne 22952.6 139.1
16 SUI 7 Alan Roura / La Fabrique 23000.2 186.7
17 ITA 34 Giancarlo Pedote / Prysmian Group 23000.3 186.7
18 FRA 27 Isabelle Joschke / MACSF 23021.7 208.2
19 FRA 30 Clarisse Cremer / Banque Populaire X 23039.1 225.6
20 JPN 11 Kojiro Shiraishi / DMG MORI Global One 23048.5 234.9
21 FRA 92 Stéphane Le Diraison / Time For Oceans 23082.5 269
22 FRA 14 Arnaud Boissieres / La Mie Câline ‑ Artisans Artipôle 23139.3 325.8
23 ESP 33 Didac Costa / One Planet One Ocean 23176.2 362.6
24 GBR 777 Pip Hare / Medallia 23176.2 362.7
25 FRA 71 Manuel Cousin / Groupe Sétin 23207.6 394
26 FIN 222 Ari Huusela / Stark 23381.3 567.7
27 FRA 50 Miranda Merron / Campagne de France 23382.5 569
28 FRA 72 Alexia Barrier / TSE ‑ 4myplanet 23425.4 611.8
29 FRA 02 Armel Tripon / L’Occitane en Provence 23437.5 624
30 FRA 83 Clément Giraud / Compagnie du lit ‑ Jiliti 23450.4 636.9
31 FRA 69 Sébastien Destremau / Merci 23489 675.5
32 FRA 56 Fabrice Amedeo / Newrest ‑ Art et Fenetres 23648.6 835.1
33 FRA 8 Jérémie Beyou / Charal 24245.3 1431.8

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