Banque Populaire IX, dead on arrival
Published on November 24th, 2018
Launched in 2017, the 32m maxi trimaran Banque Populaire IX had big plans to terrorize ocean records and race amid the growing Ultime Class of monster multihulls. Designed by VPLP, on its first outing a year ago it exceeded 35 knots, elevating up on its foils.
It was an epic sight, albeit, short lived. The boat now appears to be destroyed.
The French superstar sailor Armel Le Cléac’h capsized Banque Populaire IX on the third day of the Route du Rhum solo transatlantic race, apparently caused after breaking off its port float. Occurring 340 miles northeast of the Azores, Le Cleac’h was contending with winds of 30-35 knots and five-metre weaves.
This report has been translated from the team’s website:
Since the damage that led to the capsizing of Maxi Banque Populaire IX on November 6th, the insurer and Team Banque Populaire have worked tirelessly to set up a recovery mission trimaran elements.
A ship arrived in the area a few days after the capsizing in an attempt to bring back the damaged elements of the boat. But after 10 days at sea in difficult weather conditions, the tug arrived in Vigo with initial inspection showing how the boat had sharply deteriorated.
“Despite all our efforts, with the storm, the boat is completely dislocated and in this state its reconstruction is impossible,” reports Ronan Lucas, Team Banque Populaire director.
It was reported at the time of the launch in October 2017 that the 18-month construction of the maxi trimaran cost 10 million euros.
For more photos from the (sad) arrival in Vigo …click here.