On the 16th April Pasquale de Gregorio sailing Wind crossed the finishing line at Sables d'Olonne

After 158 days at sea the Italian skipper Pasquale de Gregorio crossed the finishing line of the Vendee Globe sailing his Open 50 Wind. de Gregorio, at 59 the oldest skipper to take part, had suffered damage to his rig early in the race and was also short on time for preparation before the start so for much of the time had his foot off the throttle.

The cigar smoking Italian ran out of tobacco before passing Cape Horn and his stocks of red wine were also long gone before he finished. On his arrival he commented ‘Stopping smoking is not dangerous for the health’. He made no remarks about the dangers of solo racing.

Winner of the Vendee Glove was Michel Desjoyeaux in 93 days with Briton Ellen MacArthur second. The prizegiving takes place on 2nd June.