It’s a shame the FONCIA team don’t have a spare mast lying around in Lorient. After their tactically advantageous pit stop in Recife, it’s not inconceivable that FONCIA couldn’t re-mast in Cape Town and become another Mich-Des manoeuvre. A re-rig job could easily be done in the obligatory 48 hour stop-over and afterall, they are unlikely to be the only boat yet to have problems.
Looking at Christophe Launay‘s photography of the top of FONICA’s mast and noting the soft rigging attachments, it is unlikely the cause of the snap was mechanical. During the delivery from Ibiza to England on the HUGO BOSS boat, we attached a whopping Navtec hydraulic ram to the backstay in order to create upper-mast rake in downwind/reaching conditions. A little too much psi and the whip of the sail re-loading after the boat launches down a wave and… well you can imagine what happened next. – Lia Ditton.