Terrible news as Alex prepares for his attempt at this years vendee Globe race. We really believe that he has, or had, a good chance of winning this year and know that he and the team must be gutted at this turn of events. Fingers crossed that repairs will be possible in the short time frame although the damage to the mast does not sound good.
HUGO BOSS suffers severe damage after being struck by a fishing vessel.
At 2.30am this morning Alex Thomson and his crew onboard the Open 60 yacht HUGO BOSS were struck by a 60 foot fishing vessel. HUGO BOSS was 2 miles outside the harbour of les Sables d'Olonne when the incident happened. HUGO BOSS was waiting to transfer some of the technical team onboard at daylight having just crossed the channel from their homeport of Gosport, UK ready for the start of the Vendée Globe.
HUGO BOSS was stationary with only its mainsail up when the fishing vessel struck. The race boat was visible with its navigation lights, trim lights and a strobe light on. Its radar and AIS systems were also activated and working.
The fishing vessel, registered in France, struck HUGO BOSS forward of the cap shroud on the starboard side, severely holing HUGO BOSS and bringing the mast down. The mast and sails were cut away from the boat before they motored into les Sables d'Olonne to have the damage assessed. Also onboard at the time of the incident with Alex was Boat Captain, Ross Daniel and Rigger, Giles Waterhouse. No-one onboard was injured.
"I'm devastated, but I'm glad everyone is ok" Alex Thomson, skipper HUGO BOSS.
Damage to HUGO BOSS is currently being assessed.