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After leading the 28 boat IMOCA fleet since last Monday morning, and today holding a margin of over 300 miles over second place, French skipper Charlie Dalin tonight completed an emphatic victory on the 3200 nautical miles New York Vendee Les Sables d’Olonne solo race across the North Atlantic.

Charlie Dalin : "I’m really happy, we won and that’s what counts! It was a great crossing, it feels good to win! It was the last rehearsal before the Vendée Globe, and so an important race to show the competition that I am here, I am present. I used the lessons from the outward race to New York particularly in my sleep and self management. I found my level aboard this great boat in all conditions. upwind and downwind.. It was really a great race, I had a lot of fun! It all happened three days after the start with this trough to cross and then this front. I managed to pass while most were still caught by this system. I managed to pass it and not get blocked or sucked back into it, the wind shifted, I was on the right side... It didn't matter much. After that, I continued to sail with a high intensity to stay in what is a Vendée Globe rhythm over the long term by managing my sleep and my sail changes. And then I attacked until the end! I was still hitting 30 knots a few hours from the finish. The idea was really not to let up from start to finish and that’s what I did. I sailed with my foot flat on the floor and there is no structural problems, which is good."

HIS RACE

The skipper of the Verdier designed IMOCA Macif Santé Prevoyance broke the finish line off Les Sables d’Olonne on the French Atlantic coast, off the Vendée region, at 23:44:30hrs local time France (21:44:30hrs UTC) on a beautiful mellow early summer night. His elapsed time for the course is 10d 03h 44min 30s since leaving the start line – set some 90 miles offshore of New York – on Wednesday 29th May.

Between last Sunday and Monday Germany’s Boris Herrmann (Malizia Seaexplorer) and winner Dalin were the only two solo skippers to break through a problematic low pressure trough. As soon as they emerged into the brisk southerly breezes on the other side they built a lead which simply grew and grew whilst all their rivals were left languishing in the mixed up air, unable to pass the weather hurdle which was effectively moving east with them.

Dalin, who celebrated his 40th birthday in the later stages of the outwards Transat CIC race to New York, adds to a long catalogue of podium finishes on his CV. Most memorably he was first to finish the last Vendée Globe solo round the world race in January 2021 after an immaculately executed first solo circumnavigation.

But he was displaced to second place by compatriot Yannick Bestaven who was given a time compensation for helping in the search for stricken Kevin Escoffier who had to abandon his sinking IMOCA in the Southern Ocean. Dalin was the perfect sportsman, accepting the result with elegance, empathy and understanding, never showing an ounce of frustration. Dalin won 2022’s race to Iceland, the Vendée Arctic and also triumphed on 2021’s double handed Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre sailing with Yann Eliès

After taking fourth on the outwards solo race, his eight hour deficit behind winner Yoann Richomme largely attributed to a technical issues with his steering which required him to slow at a critical phase, Dalin rested up in the Caribbean, wing foiling and spending time with his family. Looking tanned and fit on the dock in Brooklyn Dalin declared, “My goal is to sail hard and go for victory. If there is a little psychological gain, so much the better, it’s now or never.”

HIS TACTICAL MOVE WAS A MASTERSTROKE

It’s Dalin’s tactical finesse, his analysis, perhaps just the right amount of risk which sets him apart. Whilst rival Herrmann – who was always north of Dalin – climbed away to the far north Dalin stuck to the middle course and built a margin.

“I put the bow down to accelerate and get out of the system. Initially the break with the others didn’t amount to much.” But in the fleet, everyone saw MACIF Santé Prévoyance escape. “It was a matter of five miles, five miles which will turn into 500 miles,” noted rival Jérémie Beyou (Charal) who won the race in 2016 the only time it has been contested.

His outstanding triumph tonight, only his second race since he had to miss last Autumn’s Transats due to a medical issue, enhances his rank as one of the outstanding favourites to this winter go one better and win the Vendée Globe.

HIS RACE IN FIGURES

Finish time: 21:44:30 (UTC)
Race time: 10d 03h 44min 30s
Distance covered: 3 169.88 nautical miles
Average speed (on the great circle route): 13.01 knots

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After leading the New York Vendée Les Sables d’Olonne solo race across the Atlantic since Monday morning, top French skipper Charlie Dalin (MACIF Santé Prévoyance) is expected to cross the finish line during Saturday night to take a resounding victory on a showcase race which is the last big test before this winter’s upcoming 10th edition of the Vendée Globe.

When he succeeds, it will be a proper, popular triumph for Dalin, and he should be afforded a warm summer Sunday morning welcome into Les Sables d’Olonne. To date his arrivals into the famous channel of Les Sables d’Olonne date have been either muted or tinged with uncertainty. Bizarrely when he won the storm-afflicted Vendée Arctic in 2022 it was when that course was shortened and he celebrated at a remote anchorage in Iceland before returning to the Vendée in ‘delivery’ mode.

And, of course, January 2021 he was first to finish the Vendée Globe but he arrived in back in the the channel after 80 days 6hours of racing, knowing at that point the win was likely to go to either of Yannick Bestaven or Germany’s Boris Herrmann who both had been granted time recompense for their help in the search for the stricken Jean Le Cam in the Southern Ocean.

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At 5:15 pm today, while in fourth position in the New York – Vendée race, the sailboat Vulnerable, skippered by British sailor Sam Goodchild, was dismasted, bringing an end to his transatlantic race bid.

While the IMOCA monohull was dismasted, Goodchild was reported to be unharmed and is currently securing his boat.

The incident occurred approximately 150 miles from the island of Santa Maria in the Azores. Sam and his technical team, TR Racing, are diligently working to assess the situation and determine the best course of action to bring the IMOCA to port safely.

Further updates as they become available.

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After being hampered by small technical problems at a critical point on the outward race to the USA, French skipper Charlie Dalin would dearly like to be first back to Les Sables d’Olonne at the conclusion of the New York Vendée-Les Sables d’Olonne solo race to France - just as he was first to finish the last Vendée Globe but, after just three days of racing and with 2300 miles of the solo Transatlantic course still to sail there are multiple weather obstacles to be negotiated.

Since leaving the start line on Wednesday, some 90 miles off New York, Dalin on MACIF Santé et Prevoyance has been the 28-strong fleet’s most consistent leader. After losing out slightly yesterday, he is on top again as the ‘peloton’ tries to find the best way through very unpredictable, slightly random weather behind a low-pressure trough that they have been negotiating today.

Now the fleet is spread across about 200 miles of the North Atlantic, west-to-east, and the winds have varied in strength and direction within very short time periods. Briton Sam Goodchild – the IMOCA Globe Series champion – today reported of winds between 5 and 25 knots during the last 12 or so hours. The squalls – more akin to the Doldrums – have been vicious at times and when Goodchild spoke this morning he was making the most of a 30kts bullet that he was sailing his IMOCA Vulnerable in, trying to go fast but not break anything.

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The wind gods only partially delivered for the NY-Vendee fleet competing in the Vendee Liberty exhibition speed trials on upper New York Harbour on Friday with puffs of breeze deciding the fortunes of the fleet.

Battling north and south winds gave the 60-foot IMOCA sailboats some opportunities to lay down their rails and charge along the one-mile course in front of the Governor’s Island audience while others ran out of luck and slid along at sometimes pedestrian speeds.

Romain Attanasio, Fortinet/Best Western, from the first heat of the day, sailed up towards the Statue of Liberty, then foamed off in a big blast of breeze to capture the fastest run of five minutes and 55 seconds.

Even though the sailors are preparing for next Wednesday’s NY-Vendee transatlantic race and are maxed out with sponsor obligations and boat repairs, they see this day with friends and VIPs as a time to enjoy this moment in their careers and bathe in the Big Apple atmosphere.

“It’s like a dream, you take a five-minute ferry here and just a dinghy ride from madame Liberty,” said Louis Burton of Bureau Vallee whose daughter was trotting at his side today, a big smile peaking from beneath the brim of a familiar dark blue baseball cap with the curvy “NY” logo of the New York Yankees baseball team. “This time in my life to do that, I don’t know if will ever come back here like this. To live that with my team, partners and family, that’s incredible.”

The IMOCA class is building on the success of transatlantic and other ocean races originating from the U.S. East Coast by inviting the latest American talent to join the NY-Vendee. Rising ocean sailing star and social media phenom Cole Brauer, the first American woman to complete a solo around the world race this year. Brauer teamed up this week with Malizia skipper Boris Hermann. Her efforts to do the 2028 Vendee Globe is expected to raise the profile of this sailing discipline in the States.

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With six months to go before the start of its 10th edition, the Vendée Globe is making an American aside! The last qualifying and selection race for the solo round the world race, the New York Vendée Les Sables d'Olonne, will set sail in 15 days time, on 29 May, at 20h00 French time.

Last confrontation before the Vendée Globe

While some of the skippers have already reached Uncle Sam's country, the excitement is at its peak: the last transatlantic race is generating a lot of sporting interest. The sailors are embarking on this final test before the Vendée Globe to put their boats through their paces, while seeking to assert their superiority over their rivals. It is also the last chance for some to qualify and be among the 40 selected for the 10th edition of the Everest of the Seas.

30 sailors in search of records

On 29 May at 8 p.m. French time (2 p.m. local time), off the coast of New York, 30 sailors will set sail in the New York Vendée, twice as many as in the first edition in 2016. This transatlantic regatta, which includes the favourites for the Vendée Globe, is likely to be extremely fast: the downwind conditions should propel the first competitors towards Vendée very quickly... Given the technological advances in the IMOCAs, the record time of 9d 16h 57min 52s set by Jérémie Beyou in 2016 should be beaten.

Vendée shines on the other side of the Atlantic

Beyond the sporting aspects, this adventure represents a fantastic opportunity for the Vendée to shine on the international stage and to promote economic exchanges with the United States.

Indeed, the race partners and boat sponsors are taking advantage of the event to consolidate their presence on the other side of the Atlantic. Alongside the race, an exceptional show has been organised to meet this objective: the Vendée Liberty. This speed race against the clock will take place on 24 May in Manhattan Bay. For the partners, gathered on Governors Island for the occasion, this high point is a unique opportunity to forge new business relationships.

The ocean: the common thread

The New York Vendée is part of the Vendée Globe and its environmental roadmap, which focuses in particular on protecting the oceans.

In order to minimise the risk of collision between the IMOCA boats and marine megafauna, Biodiversity Protection Zones (BPZs) have been set up along the course. These zones, identified as key breeding and feeding grounds for cetaceans, have been determined by the organisation following studies carried out with the Share The Ocean consortium, supported by the Vendée Globe Foundation. Their delimitation is based on scientific criteria, statistical analyses and documented collision incidents.

For the same reasons and for safety reasons linked to the dense maritime traffic around New York, the start of the race will be 80 miles from the coast. The skippers will be travelling to the start area at reduced speed

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On May 29, 31 skippers from around the world will set sail from New York towards the Vendée, for the final qualifying and selection race to qualify for the Vendée Globe: the most challenging sailing race around the world. The race, which includes the favourites for the Vendée Globe, is likely to set a new transatlantic record: the expected downwind conditions should propel the first competitors towards Vendée very quickly.

The event will begin with a show of all the IMOCA boats on May 24. These impressive 60-foot-long racing boats, which can sail up to 50 mph, will make the Show in Manhattan Bay. 

From one edition to the next, the Vendée Globe is becoming increasingly international. While 2020 was a record year in this respect, 2024 is once again a record year with 16 international candidates.

New York Vendée - Les Sables d'OlonneThe New York Vendée - Les Sables d'Olonne race is a significant event, and on May 23, 2024, all the IMOCA boats will be docked in New York and Newport. It is a race that brings together the best sailors from around the world, and the competition is expected to be fierce

International Fleet

The New York Vendée - Les Sables d'Olonne, the final qualifying and selection race for the Vendée Globe, further underlines this trend. Among the 31 competitors are 14 international skippers, representing over 45% of the fleet and 11 nationalities.

The appeal of this race goes beyond national borders, as illustrated by the fact that it is attracting a new nationality with Scott Shawyer, a Canadian skipper whose ambition is to take part in the Vendée Globe 2028. "This race means a lot to me, as it will be my first solo race, my first solo transatlantic race and therefore a whole series of firsts! It's a big step in my programme," explains the Canadian skipper.

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On 10 November 2024, the Vendée Globe skippers will set off on the 10th edition of the non-stop, non-assisted, single-handed round-the-world race.

They will sail down the legendary Les Sables d'Olonne channel, cheered on enthusiastically by the public in Vendée, before setting off across the seas of the globe and attempting to beat Armel Le Cléac'h's record by completing the 45,000-kilometre course in less than 74 days, 3 hours and 35 minutes.

The toughest sailing race

Nicknamed the Everest of the seas, the Vendée Globe is the most demanding of all sailing races. Kojiro Shiraishi, the Japanese skipper who has already finished the circumnavigation in the 2020 edition, can testify: "There is no safe place on the Vendée Globe course. The southern seas are the most hostile, but from start to finish, there is danger everywhere." But its toughness is also its beauty: "It's the most extreme and the most beautiful race", confides Arnaud Boissières, who is about to participate in his fifth Vendée Globe.

Benjamin Ferré, a young rookie, adds: "It's the greatest race of all, the one that most people dream about, and it has incredible symbolism: it's one man, alone on his boat, sailing around the planet. It's the most poetic thing in the world, and that's why it brings people together so much." He continues: "We come here to find the value of deprivation: we leave what we love most in the world so that we can be even more aware of it when we find it again". While the skippers come to learn about their limits, above all they learn to go beyond them. In the most remote corners of the planet, on the most hostile seas, they seek to apprehend the unknown: "It's this unknown that makes this race so unique", adds Arnaud Boissières.

An eagerly awaited popular event

During a Vendée Globe, the skippers forge very close links with the public, who are always in ever greater numbers in the village of Les Sables d'Olonne and on the sides of the channel for the start and for all the finishes. Paul Meilhat - forced to retire in 2016 and returning in 2024 - remembers: "The descent of the channel in Les Sables d'Olonne, in terms of emotions, is one of the most powerful moments I have ever lived through".

As well as being a sporting competition and an extraordinary adventure, the Vendée Globe is also one of the biggest popular sporting events in France. The event is becoming increasingly international with every edition: in 2024, 1/3 of the candidates are international.

Strong enthusiasm for this 10th edition

Alain Leboeuf, President of the Vendée Globe: "We are extremely enthusiastic about celebrating the 10th edition of the Vendée Globe in 2024. Never before has the event generated such enthusiasm. This anniversary edition promises to leave a lasting impression".

The first record for 2024 is the number of candidates: 44 for 40 places at the start.

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Zodiac, a well-known international brand in RIBs with over 125 years of experience, has renewed its partnership with the Vendée Globe, one of the most renowned ocean races in the world.

As an official partner of the 2024 Vendée Globe, Zodiac will provide a safety fleet of 42 RIBs to escort the 40 solo skippers competing in this unique race. 

Zodiac RIBs are known for their exceptional speed and crossing capacity in rough seas, making them reliable and resistant.

Their low centre of gravity, deep V hull and seaworthy floats ensure the best possible safety measures for the skippers. The deep V hulled RIBs will be available to the race organisers to welcome the winner of the 10th edition of the Vendée Globe and all other competitors to the finish line. 

As part of a partnership agreement, Zodiac will produce 42 limited edition custom-built RIBs in the colours of the Vendée Globe. These RIBs will be available for sale to the public.As part of a partnership agreement, Zodiac will produce 42 limited edition custom-built RIBs in the colours of the Vendée Globe. These RIBs will be available for sale to the public.

The Irish agent for. Zodiac RIBS is Dun Laoghaire Harbour's MGM Boats

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The tenth edition of the non-stop, non-assisted, single-handed round-the-world Vendee Globe race has set a new record with 44 skippers applying.

There are a number of newcomers, the 18 'rookies'. The youngest skipper, Violette Dorange, is just 22! She is due to compete in her first round-the-world race aboard the boat on which Jean Le Cam completed the 2020 Vendée Globe. King Jean, the emblematic face and oldest skipper in the race, should be lining up at the start for the sixth time, on his brand new IMOCA with straight daggerboards, which has just been launched.

But as exciting as it is, there will be some disappointment, from a home perspective at least, that a number of fledgeling Irish campaigns are not on the list.

Among the six female candidates - as many as the 2020 record - Sam Davies, Justine Mettraux and Clarisse Crémer have high ambitions at the helm of high-performance boats and are looking forward to taking part in the battle for the podium. Also racing is Pip Hare, who visited Ireland recently as interviewed by Afloat here.

Damien Seguin, the first disabled skipper to complete a Vendée Globe in 2020-2021, should be back alongside Jingkun Xu, a young Chinese skipper with an arm amputation. Their candidacy highlights that Vendée Globe is also an inspiring demonstration of inclusion.

A race more international than ever

The internationalisation of the Vendée Globe is reaching new levels: applications are coming in from the four corners of the globe! If 2020 was a record year in this respect, 2024 is once again, proof that the trend is set to continue. The candidates include 16 international skippers, representing more than a third of the entries, compared with 12 in 2020. In addition, the 11 nationalities represented are spread across 4 of the Globe's five continents. 

Sailors increasingly committed

From social action to environmental protection and medical research, the Vendée Globe is an opportunity for more and more skippers to use their achievements to support causes that are close to their hearts. There are more than 30 causes supported by the sailors. Some, like Tanguy Le Turquais with Lazare or Manuel Cousin with Coup de Pouce, have named their boat after the charity they support, to give them maximum visibility. Others are taking a different approach, like Thomas Ruyant and Sam Goodchild, sailing under the common banner of the "We sail for people and planet" collective, which works to help people and the planet.

The Initiatives-Coeur project with skipper Sam Davies enables children with heart malformations to be operated in France when this is impossible in their own country. Their ambition is to save 500 children by the end of the next Vendée Globe. Maxime Sorel, skipper of the new IMOCA V and B - Monbana - Mayenne, has been deeply involved with "Vaincre la Mucoviscidose" for nearly 10 years, an association he has promoted through his various exploits, at sea during Vendée Globe and on land when he climbed the highest peak in the world, Mount Everest.

40 places at the Start, 10 November 2024

For the 2020 edition, 37 skippers applied. In the end, only 33 took part in the race.

To find out which 40 competitors will set sail on 10 November 2024, we will have to wait for the final qualifying and selection race: the New York Vendée - Les Sables d'Olonne, which will start from the United States on 29 May 2024.

2024 Candidates :

  • Fabrice AMEDEO (Nexans - Arts & Fenêtres) - FRA
  • Romain ATTANASIO (Fortinet - Best Western) - FRA
  • Eric BELLION (STAND AS ONE) - FRA
  • Yannick BESTAVEN (Maître CoQ V) - FRA
  • Jérémie BEYOU (Charal) - FRA
  • Arnaud BOISSIÈRES (La Mie Câline) - FRA
  • Louis BURTON (Bureau Vallée) - FRA
  • Conrad COLMAN (Imagine) - USA/NZL
  • Manuel COUSIN (Coup de Pouce) - FRA
  • Antoine CORNIC (Human Immobilier) - FRA
  • Clarisse CRÉMER (L'Occitane en Provence) - FRA
  • Charlie DALIN (MACIF Santé Prévoyance) - FRA
  • Samantha DAVIES (Initiatives-Cœur) - GBR
  • Violette DORANGE (DeVenir) - FRA
  • Louis DUC (Fives Group - Lantana Environnement) - FRA
  • Benjamin DUTREUX (GUYOT environnement – Water Family) - FRA
  • Benjamin FERRÉ (Monnoyeur - Duo for a Job) - FRA
  • Sam GOODCHILD (For the Planet) - GBR
  • François GUIFFANT (Partage) - FRA
  • James HARAYDA (Gentoo Sailing Team) - GBR
  • Pip HARE (Medallia) - GBR
  • Oliver HEER (Oliver Heer Ocean Racing) - SUI
  • Boris HERRMANN (Malizia - Seaexplorer) - GER
  • Isabelle JOSCHKE (MACSF) - FRA/GER
  • Tanguy LE TURQUAIS (Lazare) - FRA
  • Jean LE CAM (Tout commence en Finistère - Armor-Lux) - FRA
  • Nicolas LUNVEN (Holcim - PRB) - FRA
  • Sébastien MARSSET (Foussier - Mon Courtier Energie) - FRA
  • Paul MEILHAT (Biotherm) - FRA
  • Justine METTRAUX (Teamwork.net) - SUI
  • Giancarlo PEDOTE (Prysmian Group) - ITA
  • Yoann RICHOMME (Paprec Arkéa) - FRA
  • Alan ROURA (Hublot) - SUI
  • Thomas RUYANT (For People) - FRA
  • Damien SEGUIN (Groupe APICIL) - FRA
  • Phil SHARP (OceansLab - Cleantech Accelerator) - GBR
  • Kojiro SHIRAISHI (DMG MORI Global One) - JPN
  • Sébastien SIMON (Groupe Dubreuil) - FRA
  • Maxime SOREL (V and B - Monbana – Mayenne) - FRA
  • Guirec SOUDÉE (Freelance.com) - FRA
  • Nicolas TROUSSEL (NC) - FRA
  • Denis VAN WEYNBERGH (D'Ieteren Group) - BEL
  • Szabolcs WEORES (New Europe) - HUN
  • Jingkun XU (Singchain Team Haikou) - CHN
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The 2024 Vendée Globe Race

A record-sized fleet of 44 skippers are aiming for the tenth edition of the Vendée Globe: the 24,296 nautical miles solo non-stop round-the-world race from Les Sables d’Olonne in France, on Sunday, November 10 2024 and will be expected back in mid-January 2025.

Vendée Globe Race FAQs

Six women (Alexia Barrier, Clarisse Cremer, Isabelle Joschke, Sam Davies, Miranda Merron, Pip Hare).

Nine nations (France, Germany, Japan, Finland, Spain, Switzerland, Australia, and Great Britain)

After much speculation following Galway man Enda O’Coineen’s 2016 race debut for Ireland, there were as many as four campaigns proposed at one point, but unfortunately, none have reached the start line.

The Vendée Globe is a sailing race round the world, solo, non-stop and without assistance. It takes place every four years and it is regarded as the Everest of sailing. The event followed in the wake of the Golden Globe which had initiated the first circumnavigation of this type via the three capes (Good Hope, Leeuwin and Horn) in 1968.

The record to beat is Armel Le Cléac’h 74 days 3h 35 minutes 46s set in 2017. Some pundits are saying the boats could beat a sub-60 day time.

The number of theoretical miles to cover is 24,296 miles (45,000 km).

The IMOCA 60 ("Open 60"), is a development class monohull sailing yacht run by the International Monohull Open Class Association (IMOCA). The class pinnacle events are single or two-person ocean races, such as the Route du Rhum and the Vendée Globe.

Zero past winners are competing but two podiums 2017: Alex Thomson second, Jérémie Beyou third. It is also the fifth participation for Jean Le Cam and Alex Thomson, fourth for Arnaud Boissières and Jérémie Beyou.

The youngest on this ninth edition of the race is Alan Roura, 27 years old.

The oldest on this ninth edition is Jean Le Cam, 61 years old.

Over half the fleet are debutantes, totalling 18 first-timers.

The start procedure begins 8 minutes before the gun fires with the warning signal. At 4 minutes before, for the preparatory signal, the skipper must be alone on board, follow the countdown and take the line at the start signal at 13:02hrs local time. If an IMOCA crosses the line too early, it incurs a penalty of 5 hours which they will have to complete on the course before the latitude 38 ° 40 N (just north of Lisbon latitude). For safety reasons, there is no opportunity to turn back and recross the line. A competitor who has not crossed the starting line 60 minutes after the signal will be considered as not starting. They will have to wait until a time indicated by the race committee to start again. No departure will be given after November 18, 2020, at 1:02 p.m when the line closes.

The first boat could be home in sixty days. Expect the leaders from January 7th 2021 but to beat the 2017 race record they need to finish by January 19 2021.

Today, building a brand new IMOCA generally costs between 4.2 and €4.7million, without the sails but second-hand boats that are in short supply can be got for around €1m.

©Afloat 2020

Vendee Globe 2024 Key Figures

  • 10th edition
  • Six women (vs six in 2020)
  • 16 international skippers (vs 12 in 2020)
  • 11 nationalities represented: France, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Hungary, Japan, China, USA, New Zealand (vs 9 in 2020)
  • 18 rookies (vs 20 in 2020)
  • 30 causes supported
  • 14 new IMOCAs (vs 9 in 2020)
  • Two 'handisport' skippers

At A Glance - Vendee Globe 2024

The 10th edition will leave from Les Sables d’Olonne on November 10, 2024

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