Posts Tagged ‘alex thomson’
Finally, we get the answer to the all-consuming question of whether or not Hugo Boss is carrying a spare foil. If so, how will he fit it and when? If not, how will he deal with ‘ol’ stumpy’? How does Alex feel about getting passed by Armel Le Cle’ach for the lead (while we speak to him live)? How did he hold him off for so long? All that and much more in this half hour more worth of questions from the Anarchists and Clean. It’s Hugo Boss skipper Alex Thomson, live from the Southern Ocean!
EDIT: We’ve brought up Alex’s audio for those of you who had issues with the Facebook Live vid or those who just can’t stand Clean’s face – you can listen in loud stereo over here.
Title shout to the bubblegum punk that is Eve6.
November 27th, 2016 by admin
Our own Mr. Clean and RailMeat get bylines in an excellent short vid that gives you a real taste of the Vendee Globe from the perspective of New York Times sailing editor Chris Museler. Watch it in the original spot here.
November 26th, 2016 by admin
Our exclusive comment from the Hugo Boss team regarding Alex Thomson’s replacement foil has lit a fire of speculation from all over the world, and we have to emphasize that we do not have any first-hand knowledge of a spare foil aboard the boat – it’s all just words from an ATR source for now. But a sharp-eyed Anarchist caught some of those words before they were deleted from the VG website; the conversation was between VG headquarters and Alex via satphone, and here is the text that’s since been scrubbed:
VG: Do you have a spare foil?
AT: “It’s an interesting question. One of the benefits of going for the design that we went for is that you have the ability to be able to push out what was there, and we’d be the only boat in the fleet that could put a foil in through the deck. It was certainly part of our consideration when we chose to go for this foil.
VG: Do you have a spare foil onboard?
AT: “One of the major problems with these foils is that they’re very heavy. They’re north of 100kgs each so the reality of being able to put another one in – getting it up on deck, and jiggling around with it – is that it would be very, very difficult. It’s not an easy thing to try to do – I guess you’d have to have perfect conditions for it.
VG: Do you have a spare foil onboard?
AT: “Do I have a spare foil onboard? That would be telling, wouldn’t it.”
VG: Do you have a spare foil onboard?
AT: “No comment.”
It may all be academic anyway, as Armel Le Cle’ach is just 12 miles from rolling Thomson as we speak. It’s head to head in the Southern Ocean for now in a race where anything can – and does – happen. Anyone bored yet?
We’re speaking to Alex tomorrow via satphone; we just put up a thread to ask your questions directly – post yours and if they’re good, we’ll get the answer straight from the leader of the Vendee Globe.
BONUS: For a crazy amount of data on the distances, speeds, and much more from the fleet, check out this cool page.
November 26th, 2016 by admin
With Vincent Riou limping off to safety after cracking his keel, Seb Josse losing hours to repair UFO-damaged rudder linkage last night, and Alex Thomson somehow holding on to a 100+ mile lead with just a stub of a starboard foil, it’s clear that the biggest hurdle to winning the 2016 Vendee Globe may very well be floating – or swimming – in the water. With PRB down it’s also clear that it ain’t just a foil thing, and don’t forget the famous secrecy of some teams; we may only be hearing a portion of the actual damage reports.
With Thomson seeming to easily hold off Banque Populaire at sustained speeds of 20+ knots, we asked his team for a photo of the Hugo Boss damage to address some of the speculation that Alex is playing head games with other teams and that there was no collision. We were told there were no pics yet because the stump is under water and spray at 20 knots, and said we’d all see pics and video of Thomson’s foilectomy when the weather moderated. We’ve also just learned exclusively that the non-French ocean racing world’s biggest hope may not be over at all, thanks to a spare starboard foil aboard the Boss! Alex will attempt to cut away and jettison the remaining stub and insert the spare downward from the deck openings ; it is a very tricky operation but they’ve practiced it at least once, and it’s the reason for their unique deck/foil exit configuration.
The reality of the situation is dramatic enough, but we loved SA’er ‘nedev’s explanation of Thomson’s problem way more.
To be honest, structural failure and hitting stuff in the open ocean both seem quite unlikely to me… After all, the engineers know what they are doing right? And in that vast ocean, what is the chance to hit a teeny tiny floating object?
If you ask me, I think the most likely thing that has happened is that aliens visited AT and try to abduct him and perform scientific experiments on him. In his blind panic, AT ripped off his own foil with his bare hands and used it as a blade to fight off the extraterrestrial intruders. Stunned by this display of will power and strength, the aliens didn’t know what to do and decided that there would probably be easier test subjects to be found elsewhere on this weird planet. What they didn’t know was that during their stay on the big black boat, one of the landing lines of the UFO got wrapped around the rudder. So when they tried to fly away, the rudder got pulled up and the UFO got destabilised mid flight, causing it to crash into the ocean and sink into the depths.
So I think we should all be grateful for Alex’s heroic actions, saving humanity from the alien invasion. Quite possibly, humanity would have been wiped off the planet if AT hadn’t sacrificed his own foil to save us all!
Talk about these discoveries and more in the Vendee Globe thread.
- Tags: alex thomson, collision, foils, hugo boss, ocean racing, Seb Josse, UFO, Vendee Globe, vincent riou
November 23rd, 2016 by admin
With jagged bits falling off his now-wrecked starboard side foil, Alex Thomson has tapped into his inner Brit, keeping the proverbial ‘stiff-upper lip’ despite watching his huge 120NM+ lead erode sched by sched. How long can he hold the charging Armel and Seb off? It all depends on the wind direction, and the closer they charge toward the Antarctic Exclusion Zone, the less choices Alex will have to make.
Western France is collectively breathing a huge sigh of relief to see the rosbif’s game-changing race begin to falter, but they shouldn’t count their Maitre Coq before it hatches; this edition of the Vendee has been noteable not only for the dominance of Old England, but for the incredibly lack of attrition up to this point. It won’t last, and if one foiling 60 can wreck a foil, they all can…
Meanwhile, we’re not sure who made it, but props to the Anarchist who brought the beautiful Windyty streamlines to the Vendee Globe tracking data to produce this ‘world’s best’ tracker for the VG. Check that link here, go over here for a full-fleet performance graphing option, and of course wade into the thread if you love the Vendee.
November 21st, 2016 by admin
Alex Thomson’s trilogy of sailing stunts – the mast walk, the keel walk, and the sky walk - have succeeded beyond all expectations, but the next generation is even better at this shit. Check out young Stan Thuret and his extremely creative Frozen Kite Walk. If you want a little of the real deal, here’s a Facebook Live Q&A that Alex did a few minutes ago from the balcony next to our desk…
November 4th, 2016 by admin
The haters will whinge at yet another Alex Thomson/Hugo Boss Sailing stunt while the marketing wonks will nod in admiration at the latest in the now trilogy of Thomson’s ‘walks’, but when we first heard AT had another stunt in the chamber after the Keelwalk and Mastwalk, we winced a little in fear. I mean, would anyone really be surprised if Alex put on a vintage leather biker jacket and jumped an actual shark?
So with full expectation of a shark jumping moment, we sat back with quickened pulse and watched an earlier version of the video above. And motherf^&ker – they did it again!
They’re calling it the Skywalk, and whether or not you think it somehow sullies the honor of your ‘sport’, you have to admit – it’s a seriously badass bit of stuntery and they make it look damned good. There’s a reason these pieces work so well; they are slick, ballsy, and push the envelope a little further each time, in a sport that seems made for extreme stunts – what other athletes carry around a hundred foot carbon fiber stunt pole? Alex’s enthusiasm doing his own stunts shines through and a small fortune spent on production make the new Skywalk pop and crackle; if only Hugo Boss’s coming Vendee Globe qualification run and transatlantic race are as successful…
Pics and more behind the scenes tomfoolery at Merc.
- Tags: 5west, alex thomson, aT racing, hugo boss sailing, imoca, open 60, Skywalk, stunt, Vendee Globe
March 14th, 2016 by admin
A fascinating story from a great storyteller; Alex Thomson tells us the why, the how, and way, way more about the Hugo Boss damage, dismasting, rescue, and recovery. You won’t wanna miss this classic SA Skype ‘Innerview’, and you can see the written index of the chat here and add your thoughts or arguments here.
November 4th, 2015 by admin
This shot of the outside of Hugo Boss’s hull shows the impact that broke the ribs of Alex Thomson’s brand-new Open 60; the first in a series of cascading failures that led to their near-sinking in the Bay of Biscay a few days ago. Alex is 99.9% sure this presumed collision was the root cause of the rest of the issues, but that’s not the most surprising thing we learned in our Skype interview with him this afternoon. You’ll have to tune back in to this page for the rest of the story early tomorrow, exclusively on Sailing Anarchy. It’s a good one! We’re also pleased to report that VPLP and Verdier seem to be completely on top of it, with their top guys working hand in hand with all the teams with issues. Stand by for more.
November 3rd, 2015 by admin
UPDATE: BOSS IS BACK ON THE DOCK!
We’ll have more information directly from co-skipper Alex Thomson as soon as he has had some rest.
We spoke to exhausted ATR Managing Director Stew Hosford a few minutes ago as he boarded a plane for Vigo, Spain, and he was glad to have the chance to update Alex and Guillermo’s fans around the world. Here’s the exclusive report on what happened and what’s coming up from Mr. Clean.
1) As you may have already read in their early-morning statement, Alex and Guillermo were on their way back to port after a temporary fix of several broken ribs – the same problem noted by at least two new other VPLP/Verdier boats – when they were rolled and dismasted.
2) In fact they’d stopped the boat and were hove to on port during the little unforecasted bomb of a depression that developed off the NW coast of Spain two days ago. Alex was asleep down below and Guillermo was on watch when a massive breaker capsized the boat.
3) From inside the boat, Alex found the canting button and moved the keel to the other side. The boat snapped back upright, coming up without a rig and with plenty of new damage, including a broken foil.
4) The boat was full of water, the electronics were fried, and it was time to GTFO.
5) On reaching shore, all Alex could tell his technical crew was ‘I’m going to get my boat.” The team wasted no time chartering an oceangoing tug, and they are already on station about 100 NM to the Northwest of La Coruña with Hugo Boss.
6) The dewatering is going well, the boat will be cleaned up and made as safe as possible today, then towed back to Spain overnight.
As soon as Alex has had a big of sleep and his boat is safe and sound, we’ll have an extensive interview.
Still no statement or word from VPLP or Verdier, who have a very difficult route to negotiate themselves right now. Between the insurers, race organizers, teams, and the ocean racing community, Vincent and Guillaume have very few options in how they handle this situation if they are to avoid becoming known as the next JuanK.
Check back soon for more info; watch the thread for the latest.
November 1st, 2015 by admin