Orange II, Bruno Peyron's maxi catamaran arrived in Lorient yesterday. Repairs are well underway and she could be ready to leave for the Jules Verne on Thursday

Bruno Peyron’s maxi-catamaran Orange II which was forced to retire from the Jules Verne (see news story here) arrived in Lorient yesterday morning at 0930, having taken a little more than three days to make the return journey. No sooner had she berthed in front of the French Challenge (Défi Français) base, than the shore team was busy proceeding with removing the mast and hoisting her out of the water back on to dry land. A makeshift boatyard was put in place with scaffolding protecting the fore parts of the bow sections. Already, the boat’s two crash boxes (the extreme front of the bow, which acts as a bow fender) have been rebuilt in the Multiplast boatyard and transported to the site.

The boat’s repairs should take three days. As early as this evening, the two crash boxes (parts made from light density foam) should be stuck back in place, before they are shaped and laminated tomorrow (Monday), then coated and painted on Tuesday. The boat’s designers, Gilles Ollier and Yann Penfornis: “We’re going to change the crash boxes on the two hulls. The two parts are already finished. They have been made from a slightly denser foam. They will thus be a little less shock-absorbent, if there is an accident, but they will also be less susceptible.”

As far as the weather is concerned, the team aboard Orange II are busy studying any possibilities of a window of opportunity. Bruno Peyron said: “We’ll do our utmost to be ready to start out again as quickly as possible. Apparently, there is a weather pattern developing, which might be favourable for us on the 26 February. It’s now a race against time.”