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Vendee. PRADA & Jules Verne Racing

Much better winds today. HB following the trailing edge as Alex want's to avoid leaning. 4 metre waves and 21 kt gusts. Sam has been finding it frustrating that she has to reduce sails at night for safety and so losing speed. Last night Benjamin Dutreux, in OMIA-Water Family, was very close indeed and marginally faster, so I expected he would pass her this morning, which he has. Sam, back at full sail, is marginally faster. Isabelle Joshke in 13th place is making 21kts.

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WTF?

Kevin Escoffier (PRB) Activates Distress Beacon. Jean Le Cam Alters Course To Assist​

Kevin Escoffier, 40, who is racing in third place in the Vendée Globe solo non-stop around the world race, positioned some 550 nautical miles SW of Cape Town, has triggered his distress beacon. He was racing in a strong SW’ly air stream on starboard tack behind a weather front.
At 1346hrs (UTC), he managed to send a message to his shore team, explaining that he had an ingress of water into his boat. The rescue team (MRCC Cape Town and CROSS Griz Nez) is preparing an action plan in collaboration with his PRB shore team, with Jacques Caraës and the Vendée Globe Race Direction team. Jean Le Cam, the nearest competitor, has changed course to sail to the last position given by the boat when the beacon was triggered (40°55 S 9°18 E).

Thank god Le Cam was close enough to assist.

I wonder how the rules work for these situations, I am aware that Le Cam may continue the circuit but how will this affect his placement?
 
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WTF?

Kevin Escoffier (PRB) Activates Distress Beacon. Jean Le Cam Alters Course To Assist​

Kevin Escoffier, 40, who is racing in third place in the Vendée Globe solo non-stop around the world race, positioned some 550 nautical miles SW of Cape Town, has triggered his distress beacon. He was racing in a strong SW’ly air stream on starboard tack behind a weather front.
At 1346hrs (UTC), he managed to send a message to his shore team, explaining that he had an ingress of water into his boat. The rescue team (MRCC Cape Town and CROSS Griz Nez) is preparing an action plan in collaboration with his PRB shore team, with Jacques Caraës and the Vendée Globe Race Direction team. Jean Le Cam, the nearest competitor, has changed course to sail to the last position given by the boat when the beacon was triggered (40°55 S 9°18 E).

Thank god Le Cam was close enough to assist.

I wonder how the rules work for these situations, I am aware that Le Cam may continue the circuit but how will this affect his placement?
Le Cam was rescued in 2009 Le Cam rescued - Ocean Navigator
 
Short link above, full story from the Guardian.

Rival's rescue Le Cam relives ordeal​

This article is more than 11 years old.

• 'I didn't know how long I could live inside,' sailor admits
• Frenchman may rejoin race from southerly Ushuaia port

Jean Le Cam, the Frenchman who was rescued yesterday after his boat, VM Matériaux, capsized 200 miles west of Cape Horn during the Vendée Globe solo round-the-world race, has today revealed the trauma of being trapped in an upturned boat in big seas for 16 hours.

"I always had in my head, 'Do not leave the boat' – then I didn't know how long I could live inside," Le Cam said by radio to the race headquarters after his rescue by a fellow competitor in the Vendée Globe solo round-the-world race, Vincent Riou on PRB.

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He described his disbelief when he heard Riou, who had been more than 100 miles astern in PRB, hailing him. "I heard Vincent's voice in the morning and thought, 'Am I dreaming or not?' Then I heard it again so I was sure he was there, and that's important, because if you get out and there's no one, you're in really bad shape because possibly you can't get back in. I mean, there's only one shot at this."

He escaped through the hatch in the stern, despite its being submerged, and at the third try caught a line thrown by Riou and was winched to safety. PRB's mast was damaged in the process.

Using the escape hatch at the stern of his boat – a rule of the Open 60 class – Le Cam prepared to cling on until his fellow Frenchman's arrival could rescue him. "So I went in the back, it was immersed in water, I went back in my igloo in the front of the boat, and at one point, I thought let's go back, it's not because there's water that I can't give it a try. I had capsized once and had held on to the outside of the boat for five hours, you need to hold on to something, it's like when you go buy bread you can't forget your money.

"So I opened the hatch and things kept coming out of the boat, Vincent saw things come out of the hatch, and then I put my feet first, I got out in one movement with the wave. I held on, lifted my head up, and saw Vincent, which was a great moment."

Le Cam was in the water in his survival suit, but the rescue was far from over. He still then had to climb aboard PRB in wind speeds of 25-30 knots of wind and a big sea running. Riou attempted to pass close to Le Cam and throw him a line so that he could haul himself towards PRB.

Three times he tried unsuccessfully. Le Cam described what happened then: "I was in the water, I get on the boat, one arm around the rudder, Vincent came around a few times, I grabbed on to the line and he heaved me up, then the outrigger hit the keel, and the mast of PRB was inclined 30 degrees, we consolidated the mast, and that was it."

Riou had had to winch le Cam on the line towards PRB as it drifted away from the capsized VM Materiaux and then secure the mast with the help of the rescued sailor. The pair are now headed to Cape Horn and will go on to Ushuaia, the world's most southerly port, where Le Cam will transfer to a boat owned by a former competitor, Isabelle Autissier. The race jury is debating how Riou might return to the race with a time allowance for making this rescue. Michel Desjoyeaux's Foncia continues to lead the race.

Edit to add:
In the process Riou is thought to have clipped his outrigger on Le Cam’s upturned keel and just 36 hours later, having continued the race with Le Cam on board, Riou was dismasted after just rounding Cape Horn. He was later awarded joint third place by the organisers.
 
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I wonder how the rules work for these situations, I am aware that Le Cam may continue the circuit but how will this affect his placement?
Thanks for posting both those accounts.

Vendee Globe and some Jules Verne coverage in yesterday's episode of Sea Wolves

Sea Wolves - Vendee Globe 2020 report = Pip Hare - Sea Wolf! Alex Thomson leaves the race. And now?​

 
Vendee Globe *** Emergency Update ***

Two Other Skippers Have Been Requested To Head To The Zone​

Race Direction have requested that Boris Herrmann and Yannick Bestaven alter course to head to the zone to help.

PRB = Orange [Incident site]
Yes We Cam! = White [on site]
Maitre Coq IV = Red [due SWS of site]
Seaexplorer - Grey [due west of site]
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Vendee Globe
String of "pleasure craft" (violet/purple) in the South Atlantic. As I've mentioned before, data is limited for vessels out of reach of terrestrial AIS stations, unless you have a Sat Global subscription. I don't. It's $190 per month!
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MarineTraffic: Global Ship Tracking Intelligence | AIS Marine Traffic
I've highlighted what I suspect to be the incident area:
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The last satellite AIS transmission from the highlighted vessel was received 5 hours ago. The other vessel is still sending is location. MarineTraffic: Global Ship Tracking Intelligence | AIS Marine Traffic
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Refreshing the view and zooming out a bit, we can see that Yanick Bestaven in Matre Coque IV has responded to the call from the officials to change bearing and sail to the incident site. Boris Herman is also heading in from the West to the site. https://www.marinetraffic.com/en/ais/home/centerx:9.3/centery:-41.2/zoom:8
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ETA @ 20:20 - Yanick is now at the zone, within around ten miles of Jean and Kevin.
Boris is within around 25 miles.
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ETA @ 20:50 Noticed updated news - three rather than two additional skippers were requested to help:
Race Direction have requested that Boris Herrmann and Yannick Bestaven and also Sebstien Simon alter course to head to the zone to help.
ETA @ 21:00 race position plots showing the rescue group. Sebstien approaching from the South in Arkea Paprec. This time I've left the wind overlay off as it gets to busy otherwise and arder to see the boats.
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ETA @ 21:40 Having gathered by the last position of the stricken yacht, it looks like one is guarding the possibly capsized vessel while the others are searching under motor power. Previously it seemed like Kevin had been seen in his lifeboat but it seems the situation is ongoing. Fingers crossed.
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Vendee Globe - Message from Alex Thomson. Obviously gutted about having to leave the race, says he feels broken.

@Spank-it He intends sailing the boat home from Cape Town, so yes it sounds like the team will set about making repairs.

 
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Vendee Globe 2 min video with brief clips from sailors, noting change in wind, temperature and waves. 5m seas, choppy, cold, damp and the smell of icebergs.

This afternoon's episode of Sea Wolves was recorded in the morning as usual, before the incident with Kevin Escoffier's boat:

Sea Wolves - Vendee Globe 2020 report - Apivia enters Storm! Alex Thomson speaks! Charal gains!

 
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Vendee Globe Latest official news update

Four Vendée Globe Skippers Are In The Zone To Help In Rescue of Kevin Escoffier​

2200hrs UTC NEWS UPDATE
Race Direction of the Vendée Globe requested the assistance of three competing skippers, Germany’s Boris Herrmann (Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco), Yannick Bestaven (Maître CoQ IV) and Sébastien Simon (ARKEA PAPREC) to help Jean Le Cam (Yes We Cam!) in the mission to retrieve solo skipper Kevin Escoffier from his life raft after the 40 year old from Saint Malo had to abandon his IMOCA 60 PRB this Monday afternoon after activating his distress beacon.


Escoffier was racing in third place on the 22nd day of the solo non stop around the world race, at some 840 nautical miles SW of Cape Town, when his PRB got into difficulties and he was forced to take to his liferaft.

He alerted his technical team at 1346hrs UTC this afternoon, telling them he had significant amounts of water coming into the boat and immediately triggered his yacht's distress beacon. PRB was positioned at 40deg55S 9deg16E at the time the distress beacon was activated.

Race Direction of the Vendée Globe alerted MRCC Cape Town and CROSS Griz Nez who have been collaborating in a rescue operation. The skipper closest to Escoffier’s position, Jean Le Cam, who is competing on his fifth Vendée Globe, immediately responded to the request to divert to Escoffier’s position.

Guided by Race Direction Le Cam arrived on zone around 1615hrs UTC and quickly established visual and voice contact with Escoffier who was in his liferaft but he was unable to retrieve him in the big, 5m, seas and 20-25 knot winds.

As he was manoeuvring to prepare to get closer to the liferaft Le Cam lost sight of the liferaft and could not establish radio contact nor to pick up the signal from the AIS the range of which was reduced by the heavy seas.

He lost sight of Escoffier in the dying light but has continued to try and locate him, Le Cam is communicating regularly with Race Direction and the rescue authorities. The three other skippers are now in, or are approaching the search area. The positioning of Kevin Escoffier's personal beacon (AIS MOB Man Over Board) emits HF radiowaves and will only be detected in the local zone.

The four skippers will follow a protocol established by Race Direction in coordination with Jean Le Cam. They will approach with three reefs in the mainsail and the engine idling. A grid search area for the zone has been established and will be carried out by the four IMOCAs who are set to provide assistance.

The PRB shore crew said that besides his AIS Mob, Kevin Escoffier also means to signal his presence in the liferaft. Daybreak tomorrow morning is around 0340hrs UTC in this zone and the search will be ongoing.

This press release has been drawn up jointly with the Vendée Globe and Team PRB.

News - 2200hrs UTC NEWS UPDATE Four Vendée Globe Skippers Are In The Zone To Help In Rescue of Kevin Escoffier - Vendée Globe - En


On Friday Kevin reported having had issues with his primary GPS, so had to use a spare.
News - Kevin Escoffier (PRB) A Speed Problem of A Different Kind - Vendée Globe - En

Tracking is tricky. Some plots not being updated for up to an hour. Boats probably bobbing about a lot with 5 metre waves, 21 kts and gusts, which can affect signal.

[Edited to add full text of 10pm story above and link].

Vendee English Twitter feed: https://twitter.com/VendeeGlobeENG

Jean's twitter - I should have been looking at that earlier in the race but here it is en Francais. You can follow the moments from the Mayday but obviously don't expect many updates while the search is on.
https://twitter.com/JeanLecam
 
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Latest search orientation as dawn approaches is interesting. Wind speed around 20kts rather than 25kts. Light will be improving. Transparent arrow is last position of the abandoned yacht. This gives some hope.

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Vendee Globe Emergency update
RESCUE SUCCESSFUL!!!

:applaud::dance::worship: :thumright: :applaud:

At 0118hrs UTC the PRB Team was informed that their Vendée Globe race skipper Kevin Escoffier (PRB) has been rescued by fellow Vendée Globe competitor Jean Le Cam (Yes We Cam!).
Escoffier had to abandon his IMOCA 60 PRB following damage yesterday afternoon around 1346hrs UTC and took to his liferaft some 840 nautical miles SW of Cape Town.

The rescue mission was coordinated from Les Sables d’Olonne by Vendée Globe Race Direction in collaboration with CROSS Griz Nez and MRCC South Africa. The President of PRB, Jean-Jacques Laurent was at the Race HQ with race director Jacques Caraës and the race direction team assisting through the entire process.
"He's on board with Jean!" These short words came as a huge relief for the whole team, for Escoffier’s family and all those involved in the Vendée Globe
Kevin has so far only been seen aboard YesWeCam via live video as Jean Le Cam had his video system connected during all the search operations. No one has yet been able to talk with the PRB skipper who just appeared smiling, bundled up in his survival suit alongside Jean Le Cam.
Vendée Globe race director Jacques Caraës outlined, “We sent Jean back to a position received by the CROSS Gris Nez, the position sent by the onboard EPIRB distress beacon. Météo France's drift simulation also delivered a trace. Jean set off at OOh15 UT (1h15 French time) on our request to reach this point at reduced speed. He found no one at the given location. He then resumed its journey southeast for three quarters for between 45 minutes and an hour - an hour. As he was making headway at 1.5 knots in a 20-25 knot wind under very reduced sail (3 reefs in the mainsail and no engine), he disappeared from the screen when suddenly we heard him talk. We no longer saw anyone. Then, a few minutes after 1:06 UT or 2:06 French time (time at which he had precisely to retrieve Kevin on board), Jean went back down to the chart table and then we saw Kevin arrive behind his back in a survival suit. They both appeared fit seconds before the video cut. He is fine. Everyone is well. They are recovering!
On January 6, 2009, during the 2008-2009 Vendée Globe, Vincent Riou, the then the skipper of PRB, rescued Jean Le Cam from his upturned IMOCA 60 which capsized at Cape Horn.

This time 61 year old five times Vendée Globe racer Le Cam has reversed the roles delivering Escoffier, the 40 year old skipper from Saint Malo, from a potentially lethal situation.
The whole TEAM PRB and the Vendée Globe community sincerely thanks Jean Le Cam and the three other skippers, Boris Hermann, Yannick Bestaven and Sébastien Simon who have worked heroically and tirelessly to find Kevin, as well as the race director, the CROSS Gris Nez. and the MRCC Cape Town which coordinated the search

More information to come.

News - News Flash: Kevin Escoffier Rescued by fellow Vendée Globe competitor Jean Le Cam - Vendée Globe - En
 
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Vendee Globe - Post rescue

"The rescue mission was coordinated from Les Sables d’Olonne by Vendée Globe Race Direction in collaboration with CROSS Griz Nez and MRCC South Africa. The President of PRB, Jean-Jacques Laurent was at the Race HQ with race director Jacques Caraës and the race direction team assisting through the entire process."

Initial action was to request VG yachts to act as first responders. This was a slow but thankfully successful rescue. Well done to all involved.

Vendee solo yachts are not equipped to carry a rescued passenger in any comfort. There is probably no hammock or seating so he will be resting on whatever is improvised. A logical next step would be to arrange transfer to a ship.
 
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@Electromagnetic

Thanks for the updates, I have missed all of this busy with family stuff all day finally got a chance to catch up just now.

When I read your first post with the extra boats being called in for the search I suspected the worst but thank god it all worked out in the end.

I'm really looking forward to the analysis after everyone is back on dry land as to the why's and wherefores.
 
@Electromagnetic

Thanks for the updates, I have missed all of this busy with family stuff all day finally got a chance to catch up just now.

When I read your first post with the extra boats being called in for the search I suspected the worst but thank god it all worked out in the end.

I'm really looking forward to the analysis after everyone is back on dry land as to the why's and wherefores.
When the search pattern changed to all pointing towards the East and the rising sun, that gave me some sense of hope. That's what I was looking for. Then it was a matter of looking for an update.

It will be some hours before there is a transfer. Bottom left is last location of Kevin's yacht. I suspect the upper yacht may be Jean and Kevin travelling carefully to avoid excessive discomfort for Kevin and there will be stuff to do. The other three will be returning to the race. I have no idea what provisions will be made viz time compensation if any. I expect we will find out soon enough. I'm looking forward to a few hours kip. :sleepy:

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As of the 04:00 position update, the rescue participants are still in the top ten. Three have a chance of making up lost time. Jean will have to wait a bit longer but a life saved in the South Atlantic is a remarkable achievement.
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I have been using Alex's site a lot but actually the official tracker carries a lot of this information too. The listings on the left are not so conveniently organised though.
Tracking map - Vendée Globe - En

Tracking map - Vendée Globe - En
 
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I get my news from France 24


Interesting comments about Foilers
Yes, particularly the very latest foil designs, which seem to be pushing the boundaries for efficiency to eek out whatever additional theoretical gains they can get in speed. Some of the wave impacts at those speeds can be rock hard. One trimaran, a foiler, had to halt it's attempt on the Jules Verne competition and return to port for repairs.
 

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