Ellen MacArthur is mulling next Vendee Globe entry

The next Vendee Globe start date has been set for 7 November 2004. It was announced in front of an estimated 80,000 strong crowd gathered on the beach (at low tide) of Les Sables d’Olonne for a spectacular official prize-giving for the race on Saturday night.

Not one of the three podium skippers would commit either way for the next Vendée – Roland Jourdain (Bilou) “No comment”, Michel Desjoyeaux “I might, I might not” and Ellen MacArthur “we’ll see, I can’t say definitely no”.

All of the skippers spent the afternoon with the race organisation for a debriefing and discussion on safety and other aspects of the race, the first time that they have all been together since before the start.

Philippe Jeantot, the originator and organiser of the event promised to have the rules fixed by April 2002, and coupled with the same intention of IMOCA (the Open 60 Class Association) from a technical viewpoint, should give would-be entrants a much more stable situation than in the past to secure funding and construct new boats.