Vendée Globe: Charlie Dalin first in Les Sables d’Olonne but perhaps not the winner



A crazy and new scenario. Charlie Dalin, aboard his monohull Apivia, was the first to cross the finish line of the 9eVendée Globe Wednesday January 27 after 80 days, 6 hours, 15 minutes and 47 seconds at sea. But the 26-year-old sailor from Le Havre is not yet sure of winning the race, two of his pursuers benefiting from compensation for having taken part in the rescue by Kévin Escoffier on November 30th.

Dalin completed his round-the-world tour at 20 hours, 35 minutes and 47 seconds very precise, but the German Boris Herrmann (SeaExplorer – Yacht Club de Monaco) has six hours to cross the line to get ahead of Dalin, while the Frenchman Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq IV) has ten hours and fifteen minutes of compensation for doing the same.

Boris Herrmann hits fishing boat within 100 miles of finish

Louis Burton (Bureau Vallée 2), currently second (with no future bonuses), must complete the loop “Between 12:30 a.m. and 1:00 a.m.”, according to the organization of the race, with Boris Herrmann not far in his wake. But, on the evening of Wednesday, a setback slowed down the progress of the German skipper, in the fight for the final victory: at 8:50 p.m., while he was some 90 miles from the finish line, he was collided with a fishing boat.

A foil of his monohull was damaged but the sailor from Oldenburg is fine and ” now heading towards the finish line at low speed », According to the organization of the race. Still in the race, but at a slow pace, Herrmann had to cross the finish line before 2:35 in the night to get ahead of Charlie Dalin at the top of the standings.

However, the winner should only be determined once Yannick Bestaven crosses the line in his turn. While he must have arrived before 6:50 am Thursday morning to pass Dalin, the Nazairien is currently expected between 3:30 am and 5:30 am Thomas Rettant (LinkedOut), he is currently sailing just in front of Bestaven but does not benefit bonuses.

Six days behind the record

Such a scenario is unprecedented in this solo race around the world, without assistance and without stopover which often ends in a duel, but never so close.

→ PORTRAIT. Charlie Dalin, the Vendée Globe sailor-pilot-architect

Also unprecedented, the absence of the public along the channel of the port of Vendée due to the health crisis linked to Covid-19. Only 300 volunteers of the race, masked and distanced, were authorized to make a guard of honor to greet the arrival of the first sailors.

→ READ. Vendée Globe: lying is part of the game.

On November 8, 33 skippers took the start and eight retired during this race marked by difficult weather conditions that did not allow us to break the record of 74 days and 3 hours set in 2017 by Armel Le Cléac’h.

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