Posts tagged single-handed

Jan 17

Vendée Globe 2016 – 2017 Arrival

Les Sables d'Olonne, Vendée, France 46º29’30″N 1º47’40″W

Armel Le Cléac'h crossed the Vendée Globe finish line today, setting a new Vendee Globe and solo round-the-world record of 74 days, 3 hours, 35 minutes and 46 secondsArmel Le Cléac’h crossed the Vendée Globe finish line, setting a new Vendee Globe and solo round-the-world record of 74 days, 3 hours, 35 minutes and 46 seconds and Alex Thomson crossed the finish line in 74 days, 19 hours, 35 minutes and 15 seconds, Alex Thomson has become the fastest British sailor on that route.
Alex crossed the Vendée Globe finish line this morning in 74 days, 19 hours, 35 minutes and 15 seconds

Apr 13

IMOCA Prize Giving

Lausanne, Switzerland 46º30’23″N 6º37’42″E

IMOCAPGBThere is no more challenging sailing circuit on the planet than the IMOCA circuit. AC 72’s, Extreme 40’s, Volvo 70’s, TP 52’s, you name it. They all look bitch compared to the prospect of sailing an ultra-extreme 60-foot monohull around the planet non-stop by yourself. And no one does it better than Francois Gabart. The 29-year old Frenchman not only won the Vendée Globe, but he also set a new 24-hour solo monohull record and monohull circumnavigation record in the process. If that wasn’t enough, he added a win in the prestigious Transat B-to-B race and a 2nd place in the Europe Warm-Up, which includes solo, doublehanded and crewed legs. All told, no one on the planet can sail an IMOCA 60 like Francois, and that’s why he’s the champ. On Friday night in Lausanne, Switzerland the young protegé, earning his ride through an intensely competitive skipper selection process, was awarded as the 2012 IMOCA World Champion. Francois is the youngest sailor to ever win this title.
Sailing Anarchy was live on the scene to grab this report. Flying non-stop from San Fran to Paris and then to Geneva, I arrived in Switzerland severely jet-lagged before hitching a ride to the Beau Rivage Palace in Lausanne. Chatting up Alex Thomson, one of the nicest guys in the game, along the way I arrived in Lausanne just in time to watch Alessandro di Benedetto, Mike Golding, Roland Jourdain and more compete against a group of kids in Opti’s before the prize giving. Some cheating took place, Golding protested a 12-year old and a grand time was had by all with Lake de Lausanne and the snow capped Swiss Alps in the background. Even more beautiful than the ridiculously picturesque postcard setting is the love of sailing that permeates the entire scene. Kids are sailing with and against their heroes, a new World Champ is being crowned and sailing history is being made as Open Sports Management prepares to bring the IMOCA class into an even more international and prosperous light. The energy present creates goosebumps.
After the Opti regatta, the crowd moved into the ballroom of the famed 5-star Beau Rivage Palace to continue the celebration. On stage were previous IMOCA World Champs Roland Jourdain, Bernard Stamm, Mike Golding and Marc Guillermot, while Armel Le Cleac’h, Jean Le Cam and Jean Pierre Dick gave previously recorded video tributes. Sir Keith Mills of Open Sports Management and IMOCA class president Luc Talbourdet came together to outline the future vision and direction of the class before presenting a gracious Francois Gabart with his well-earned trophy as World Champion.
It’s incredible to watch Francois grow. 6 months ago when I first met him, he was the young protegé, the hopeful, the newcomer. Now he is a champion. Not just of the circuit’s premier race, but of the entire championship. He has matured immensely in just half a year. Gracious, energetic, humble and calm under pressure, Francois displays the character of a true champion. He has proven himself on the world’s grandest stage and has become a global representative of not just the class, but of the sport. So bravo, Francois! We raise our glass to you tonight in Switzerland and around the world. You’ve earned it and you’ve inspired a future generation of champions.
Words: Ronnie Simpson

IPhone 5 Photography.

Jan 13


Les Sables d'Olonne, Vendée, France 46º29’28″N 1º47’34″W

By finishing his single-handed, non-stop round-the-world race without assistance on Wednesday morning in 80 days, 19 hours, 23 minutes and 43 seconds, Alex Thomson (HUGO BOSS) has become the fastest British sailor on that route.Photo assignment for Alex Thomson Racing – Hugo Boss.

He’s done it!!! Alex Thomson takes 3rd place in the 2012/13 Vendee Globe at 07:25:43sec GMT/ 08.25 43sec French time completing in 80 days 18 hours 23 mins and 43 seconds!! SUPERBLY DONE ALEX!

Jan 13

Francois Gabart and MACIF win the Vendée Globe

Les Sables d'Olonne, Vendée, France 46º29’25″N 1º47’30″W

IMG_1223François Gabart crossed the Vendée Globe finish line at 14:18:40 UTC today, setting a new Vendee Globe and solo round-the-world record of 78 days, 2 hours, 16 minutes and 40 seconds.

Jan 13

Doyle Sails



Dec 12

Front Covers Hugo Boss – Alex Thomson Racing


SH Dec Cover Hi res

Nov 12

Vendée Globe Race Start Day

Les Sables d'Olonne, Vendée, France 46º29’08″N 1º47’23″W

Photo assignment for Alex Thomson Racing – Hugo Boss.
Alex Thomson Racing Hugo Boss Vendée Globe Race Start Day.

What an unbelievable day! The Vendée Globe is a phenomena. This morning I woke at 6am and as I was leaving the apartment at 6.30 I could hear a huge crowd gathering with horns blowing and people chanting. It is like a crowd of people gathering at the coliseum in ancient Rome to see the gladiators parade into the arena with the same excitement and energy, and it feels like to me – a thirst for seeing those about to sacrifice themselves to unknown perils..
The team were due to meet at 07.30 and when I arrived just after the 7am the whole team were already onsite and working – this is it!
We gathered together on the hospitality boat with 100 guests and Alex arrives at 8.00. He takes a good breakfast, a weather briefing to finalise the strategy for the Biscay exit and the Portuguese coast and then a physio session and some time with his sports psychologist. At 9.30 he is ready. He says goodbye to his one year old son Oscar and his wife Kate and that is the hardest part. I walk the docks and I see all the skippers arrive with many of them with red eyes from saying goodbye to their families and children and the atmosphere is charged like nothing I have ever experienced in sailing or sport before. First I say goodbye to our team friend Gutek from Poland who received his boat from us 7 weeks ago and has spent literally a few days sailing in preparation for this most extreme of sailing challenges. He is a tough guy but this morning you could see the emotion on his face – and maybe not an inconsiderable amount of fear.
So as the boats leave the dock we take Alex to the race boat where he does a couple of quick TV interviews and the lines are cast off. The most impressive part of the Vendee Globe is the trip of 1 mile down the canal to the open sea. The quay walls are lined with what must have been 400,000 spectators and they do not simply clap and wave – they roar their heads off and chant in appreciation of the brave skippers. As soon and we rounded the corner and I heard the roar the tears were very close. The crowds hang onto every piece of space and there were people in the water and standing on the top of chimney stacks with a deafening cauldron of sound as we exit the canal.
As we reach the end of the canal we take the journalists and our sponsors off the boat as the sea becomes rough and Alex is left with the technical team to make the final preparations. Ross, Clarkee, Rachel, Guillermo, Will, Capey and I stay to the end to set everything up for him and set him on his way. The sea was very rough out in the Biscay today and with a weather front passing over with lots of cloud and rain the Vendee Globe offered us up a foreboding seascape for the start of this epic race. At 15 minutes to the start the sails are set the boat is positioned and Ross, Capey, Rachel and I jump into the support boat and say our goodbyes. I guess when you work on something like this for 3 years and you imagine all the things you will say to Alex as you say goodbye, at the end these clever words of motivation are not necessary and simply a hug, a “love you man” and “come home safe” are all that are really necessary and meaningful. A few wet eyes and it is done – he is off!
Just before the 4 minutes to the race start when the gun sounds, the last remaining crew Clarkee, Will & Guillermo give him a quick hug, and with no time to get the rib alongside, simply step over the side of the boat into the Ocean. We pull them out of the water and he is alone.
A good start, conservative, middle of the fleet, in clear air and we follow him closely on our support boat as we pass by thousands of other spectator boats with (on my last count) 12 helicopters from various TV networks thundering overhead. We follow the boat far out to sea to make sure he does not get tangled with any other spectator boat and eventually soaking wet and seriously bounced around, I look at Ross and he at me and we know it is time. We wait and follow him for another 10 minutes and then I make the call – time to go. So, we buzz alongside, and we shout out Good luck Alex – and he simply turns and gives us a quick wave before going back to helming and looking ahead. In all the time we followed on the support boat (maybe 2 hours in total) I did not see him look back at us behind him once, he knew we were there, but kept his eyes forward and out to sea. And that is it, you turn for home and leave him sail off and meet his own destiny.
For now, the next stage of the journey starts, we communicate with him through email, video and phone and we support him on his journey. We also, as a team get together and have a huge party and celebrate all the work that we have done to get to this point – but shhhhhh, we don’t tell Alex about our party tonight.
Vendée Globe – most special sporting event on the planet (IMHO).

Words: Alex Thomson Racing Team Director: Stewart Hosford
Twitter: @stewarthosford

Nov 12

Open 60 Alex Thomson Racing Hugo Boss – Onboard

English Channel, England, United Kingdom, 50º01’31″N 2º47’47″W

Photo assignment for Alex Thomson Racing – Hugo Boss.

Boss à Nova – Alex Thomson ready for the Big Dance.

As the impressive fleet of 20 IMOCAs and their skippers have now assembled in Les Sables d’Olonne for the imminent start of the Vendee Globe, Alex Thomson and his silver dance partner, the Hugo Boss Farr-designed Open 60 share a special spotlight. There are perhaps several reasons for this, the boat itself sports an impeccable paint and branding motif in classic Hugo Boss fashion, the shore team is always well choreographed and on point, and Alex himself is quite a unique character, intense and focused while maintaining a jovial personable aura and an irresistable smile. One of three British skippers in this years edition, Alex is no stranger to the open ocean and is considered a favorite of the fleet despite some formidable competition. The 38 year-old skipper is well rehearsed for this solo around the world performance having recently broken the West to East Ambrose Lighthouse to Lizard Point Under 60ft Single-Handed Monohull Record by more than 24 hours. And as you can see from this onboard photo series, Alex is both an instructor and a dancer, a man of many moods and styles, included but not limited to: The Waltz, The Swing, The Grind, The Ballad, The Bird, The Monkey, The Swim and The Wetusi. With fierce moves like this, the team of Hugo Boss will inevitably tear up the global oceanic dance floor. Put on your dancing boots…

Words: Fred Eagle

Oct 12

Open 60 Alex Thomson Racing Hugo Boss – Aerial

English Channel, England, United Kingdom, 49º31’34″N 4º40’07″W

Photo assignment for Alex Thomson Racing – Hugo Boss.
Only one more month to go!!

Aerial photo-shoot of the IMOCA Open 60 Alex Thomson Racing Hugo Boss during a training session before the Vendée Globe in the English Channel.
The Vendée Globe is a round-the-world single-handed yacht race, sailed non-stop and without assistance.