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Old 02-22-2013
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Smile And the Vendee Globe is over: Alessandro made it home

and it seems it was not only me and Eric that had noticed that the guy was last but had made a remarkable performance with a boat 25% slower than the ones that arrived first (no canting keel, 14 year's old boat).

He started this race as an adventurer that knew little about racing or sailing an Open 60 and finishes it as a competitive racer and a smiling one, broken rib and all. Now he only need a competitive boat to race with the best and I guess that his vast popularity will make it happen.

Alessandro Di Benedetto (FRA - ITA) on Team Plastique has crossed the finish line of the Vendée Globe at 15h 36 mn 30 s (French Time). He finishes eleventh in the race...(he) makes history with the shortest gap ever between the first and last finishers....

...(His) boat (was raced previously) by ‘Cali’ Boissières in 2008, Sébastien Josse in 2004 and Thomas Coville in 2000....

His race does not bear comparison to his rivals because he does not have the machine to compete in the pack and he has little experience of racing. And so he chooses to start steadily, to learn his boat day by day. To start with he is laid low by flu and that makes for a difficult first few days....

In a way the passage of Cape Horn is a watershed for the skipper of Team Plastique. He is no longer happy to just live his days in a good mood and get on steadily.

He has learned his boat and what makes each tenth of a knot of difference and he has upped the pace and rhythm accordingly. But successive damages have taken their toll. He is left with no downwind sails, has to climb the mast several times to sort out halyard issues. And a tumble into the cockpit when he gybes unexpectedly results in a broken rib for Alessandro. But he never shared a moment which was not upbeat and insightful. Just about every Di Benedetto broadcast started with ‘everything is good, everything is OK ...

And now finishing today, Friday 22nd February, Alessandro has improved on the reference time for the boat of his pal Boissières by more than one day...


And ARNAUD BOISSIÈRES is a racer, not really a top one but a good one with lot's of experience racing Open 60's. He won the Record SNSM in 2011.

I am curious about the video. I will post it when available.

...
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Last edited by PCP; 02-22-2013 at 11:38 AM.
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