Michel Desjoyeux and Francois Gabard aboard second-place Foncia has been forced to head for the Brazilian coast to fix a new sacrificial crash box to the bow of the four-month old boat, the newest in the IMOCA fleet. Le Professeur hit an unidentified floating object a couple of days ago tearing off the false bow. The loss of the surface skin of the hull (layers of carbon which cover the foam slab) isn’t a serious handicap right now but “it’s out of the question to head into the Southern Ocean without this bumper, which has clearly already fulfilled its role”, explains Michel. More news here at the Foncia site. The team thinks they’ll be able to fit a new bow to the boat in just a few hours, and they’re already mobilizing for a Friday layover somewhere near Recife. How much time Foncia loses and how many Barcelona World Race competitors pass by remains to be seen.
While it’s a bummer to see such awesome competitors sidelined by some floating crap, it means our American and German friends on Neutrogena will sit in a strong fifth place, and we would love to see them keep it up all the way ‘round the marble!