Foncia has suffered damage to its bow, whilst Président has lost its mast and is heading to Cape Verde

Jean Le Cam (FRA) reported to Race Direction of the Barcelona World Race at 1925hrs (UTC) this Monday evening that the IMOCA Open 60 President has lost its mast. Jean Le Cam and Spanish co-skipper Bruno Garcia are on board and both safe and healthy.

The incident occurred when the boat was positioned at around 18º 03 ‘ NR /26 º 14 ‘ W and was sailing at speeds of between 16 and 20 knots. The boat is reported to have hit a wave and the mast broke.

Michel Olivier, the team’s technical manager and Race Direction are in permanent contact with the boat and have confirmed that neither skipper required assistance.

Both are on board and President is currently under engine to cover the 83 miles which separated them from San Antao, the most northerly island of the Cape Verde group. The weather conditions currently are a North Easterly blowing at around 19 knots with a short sea.

Meanwhile, Jean Paul Roux, director of Michel Desjoyeaux’s project management company Mer Agitée received a call on Sunday 9 January from the Foncia skipper to say that they had suffered damage to the crash box on the bow. The crash box is broken off, the victim of a shock with a floating object. (The crash box is a sacrificial section of the bow which is designed to absorb such impacts and help protect the hull itself.)

There is no immediate danger to the crew or the boat and the duo Desjoyeaux and co-skipper François Gabart plan to head for Recife on the Brasilian east coast. That decision is not yet definitive.

The technical team are already working to have a replacement section manufactured ready to change when the boat arrives in Recife, projected to be around Friday 14 January.

This morning Foncia was 1100 miles from Recife and making 16.3 knots on the 0400hrs UTC ranking. Such a technical stop is not penalised under the race rules until after Australia when a mandatory 48 hours stop must be taken.

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