Irish sailor Enda O’Coineen who is racing in 15th place in the Vendée Globe solo round the world race which started in Les Sables d’Olonne, France on Sunday 6th November reported to Race Direction in Paris at 0830hrs UTC today (Sunday 1st January) that the mast of his IMOCA Kilcullen Voyager-Team Ireland has broken.
Positioned some 180 nautical miles to the south east of Dunedin, New Zealand O’Coineen, 60, was racing in 35kts of SSE wind when the rig broke. The skipper is uninjured and reported that he was starting to secure his boat and the broken pieces of the rig and planned to head to New Zealand which, in the current weather situation, is downwind for him.
“I am devastated. Things were going quite well. O’Coineen said, “I was in good shape. Having got this far I felt we could handle anything. There was just that little malfunction of the self-steering that set a whole train in motion. I have to accept responsibility. What happens, happens.”