Volvo Ocean Race: Drama on the Sidelines

Published on June 17th, 2015

While the Volvo Ocean Race fleet prepared to start their ninth leg in Lorient, France, a RIB under the authority of the race organization was run over near the start line by the 40-meter maxi trimaran Spindrift 2, presumably in the area as a spectator to the race start.

With four people onboard the RIB, the incident occurred Tuesday, June 16 around 4:15 pm in the starting area of Leg 9. A woman on the RIB received leg injuries in the collision, and after receiving attention on the water, she was airlifted at approximately 5:11 pm and transported to Scorff Hospital in Lorient were she was treated by medical staff at 5:16 pm.

“Above all else, we are concerned about the condition of the injured person,” said Yann Guichard, skipper of Spindrift 2. “All our thoughts go out to her and to her family. The team has been deeply affected by the accident and naturally we are cooperating fully with the investigation that is underway.”

From the photo, the weather hull of Spindrift 2 is seen passing over the RIB with its blades coming in contact with the boat and passengers.

Race stopover officials from Lorient are in regular contact with her family, but have no further official updates on her condition.

Jean-Sebastien Evrard, an AFP photographer based in Nantes, witnessed the incident. Click here for his report.

Video and screen grabs below show the incident.

Editor’s note: This story was revised on June 25, 2015 per request by AFP.

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