Thomson and White's repairs going well
Reports from Les Sables D’Olonne suggest that all is going well with the repairs to Alex Thomson’s Open 60 Hugo Boss, while a few hundred metres away, Steve White’s Spirit of Weymouth’s final refit is also on track.
The British Vendée Globe skippers may be at different ends of the budget spectrum, but their race to be ready on time is equally real and requires careful timing and logistics to make sure everything happens on time. With the past owner of Spirit of Weymouth Josh Hall here to help out, Steve White has been spending some time along with the other skippers learning Meteo France’s clever new meteo software Synboat.
Meanwhile, the repairs to Hugo Boss continue. Harry McGougan, Alex Thomson Racing’s Operations Director reports:
” Since yesterday the hole in the side of hull has been cut. The actual size is about 4m by 1.5m so a little smaller than we first thought. That part of the job, the cutting, is at the final stages. The hull piece is one piece and the deck piece is a panel 4m by 1.5m, and there are various pieces of panel for the bulkheads. In total two very big pieces and several smaller pieces.”
” The plan looks like they will be glued in during tomorrow. The rig is going well too. The laminating preparation work is mainly done, and it is now prepping the mast to get all through the lines through. We have 22 separate lines to go down the mast. And as we speak there is a guy from Southern Spars getting on a plane in New Zealand with the metal hardware for the spreaders, and the piece of mast and splicing kit, and that is due to arrive early on Sunday morning.”
“Boatbuilding is round the clock. The actual preparation for the race has another team carrying on the with that, re-checking all the deck gear, because there is a whole mass of carbon dust so that has to be stripped down again, the jobs list we had before this incident has to be got through, So it is making sure all the details are completed.”
” Alex is OK. Yesterday was a difficult day, a full on day with the lawyers and court surveyors and things like that, and there was a lot of ups and downs and a big grilling from the court surveyor, but he is better today. Alex is now getting to the point where he will distance himself and get his head back into race mode.”
And from his schoolroom desk Steve White confirms:
” By the end of the day the entire bottom of the hull should have been sand blasted, the epoxy barrier coat should start going on tomorrow. The mast is completely stripped. We have new halyards being made by Lancelin and they should be arrived by Thursday of next week, so the Fleet 77, the generator will go in, everything is really moving forward.”
Vendée Globe site