The Ocean Race reduced to four boats
Published on June 18th, 2023
The Hague, Netherlands (June 18, 2023) – GUYOT environnement – Team Europe has confirmed their participation in The Ocean Race 2023 has concluded following the collision they caused with 11th Hour Racing Team at the start of Leg 7 on June 15.
The team had incurred significant setbacks during the race, having missed Leg 3 due to hull delamination and then was dismasted during Leg 4. The boat was shipped to Europe during the transatlantic Leg 5, and while able to compete in Leg 6, the Leg 7 collision proved too much to overcome.
The provisional repair work on the bow section of the yacht has been completed to such an extent that the boat will be transferred to its team base in Les Sables d’Olonne, France.
“It’s too risky to take the boat all the way to Genoa with our temporary repairs and we’ll probably arrive after the end of the Grand Final period in Genoa,” explained skipper Benjamin Dutreux. He will be onboard with Charles Drapeau (OBR) and Tristan Estèves (boat builder). The delivery to their base should take around 4-5 days.
GUYOT environnement – Team Europe hopes to bring his team together one last time in Genoa to show their respect to the winners and competitors of The Ocean Race and to celebrate together the conclusion of the 14th edition of the world race.
Dutreux was heartbroken after the crash and tearfully inspected the damage to the 11th Hour Racing Team’s yacht, is now looking ahead again and explains how things will continue on his team’s side.
“The next steps will be to bring the boat home and see what we can do,” he said. “There’s still quite a lot of damage on the bow, so there’ll be a lot of work. Right now the aim is to be in time for the Transat Jaques Vabre, and above all in good conditions.”
Regarding the damage to their boat, the bowsprit was broken in the middle, but the most serious damage was to the bow.
“We have a big hole in the hull, in an area that is built differently,” note Thomas Cardrin, head of the tech team. “Some are no core, some are foam core, some are monolithic. So we had to run down most of the broken carbon, rebuild the outer skin with six layers of carbon. Now we are working on the core from the inside. We are trying to bridge the inner skin on the outer skin to make sure it sticks together. The repairs will be done for a safe delivery.”
Conversely, repairs to 11th Hour Racing Team have been completed, with the team seeking to depart today for Genoa in hopes of arriving by June 30.
IMOCA Overall Leaderboard (after 6 of 7 legs)
1. 11th Hour Racing Team — 33 points
2. Team Holcim-PRB — 31 points
3. Team Malizia — 27 points
4. Biotherm — 19 points
5. GUYOT environnement – Team Europe — 2 points
IMOCA: Name, Design, Skipper, Launch date
• Guyot Environnement – Team Europe (VPLP Verdier); Benjamin Dutreux (FRA)/Robert Stanjek (GER); September 1, 2015
• 11th Hour Racing Team (Guillaume Verdier); Charlie Enright (USA); August 24, 2021
• Holcim-PRB (Guillaume Verdier); Kevin Escoffier (FRA); May 8, 2022
• Team Malizia (VPLP); Boris Herrmann (GER); July 19, 2022
• Biotherm (Guillaume Verdier); Paul Meilhat (FRA); August 31 2022
The Ocean Race 2022-23 Race Schedule:
Alicante, Spain – Leg 1 (1900 nm) start: January 15, 2023
Cabo Verde – ETA: January 22; Leg 2 (4600 nm) start: January 25
Cape Town, South Africa – ETA: February 9; Leg 3 (12750 nm) start: February 26
Itajaí, Brazil – ETA: April 1; Leg 4 (5500 nm) start: April 23
Newport, RI, USA – ETA: May 10; Leg 5 (3500 nm) start: May 21
Aarhus, Denmark – ETA: May 30; Leg 6 (800 nm) start: June 8
Kiel, Germany (Fly-By) – June 9
The Hague, The Netherlands – ETA: June 11; Leg 7 (2200 nm) start: June 15
Genova, Italy – The Grand Finale – ETA: June 25, 2023; Final In-Port Race: July 1, 2023
The Ocean Race (formerly Volvo Ocean Race and Whitbread Round the World Race) was initially to be raced in two classes of boats: the high-performance, foiling, IMOCA 60 class and the one-design VO65 class which has been used for the last two editions of the race.
However, only the IMOCAs will be racing round the world while the VO65s will race in The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint which competes in Legs 1, 6, and 7 of The Ocean Race course.
Additionally, The Ocean Race also features the In-Port Series with races at seven of the course’s stopover cities around the world which allow local fans to get up close and personal to the teams as they battle it out around a short inshore course.
Although in-port races do not count towards a team’s overall points score, they do play an important part in the overall rankings as the In-Port Race Series standings are used to break any points ties that occur during the race around the world.
Held every three or four years since 1973, the 14th edition of The Ocean Race was originally planned for 2021-22 but was postponed one year due to the pandemic, with the first leg starting on January 15, 2023.