Thomson in the lead as he bids for VendÃ©e victory
Gosport sailor Alex Thomson continues to lead the Ocean Masters New York to VendÃ©e Race.
This race sets the form guide to the upcoming Vendée Globe and is a sprint across the Atlantic amongst the key competitors in the Ocean Masters fleet.
The first few days of the race saw several competitors return to Newport, Rhode Island, after collisions south of the exclusion zone.
Thomson hit several objects in the water but survived to take the lead.
He said: ‘I had four collisions myself.
‘I had two collisions with the foil, one of which was very very hard, but I couldn’t see any damage.
‘Then I hit something with the keel and I had two other hits, but my kick-up rudder system worked very well.
‘I was extremely worried and I am very happy to have got out of that.
‘Every boat which turned back I saw them go past.
‘I am very sorry for them.
‘It is very harsh after so much preparation and work.’
Thomson’s IMOCA 60 HUGO BOSS has recently undergone a complete refit and relaunched in April this year.
HUGO BOSS has reached record speeds during this race and the development of the team’s new foils is proving to be a winning design feature.
This race is Thomson’s penultimate solo race before he starts the Vendée Globe in November – a single-handed, non-stop, unassisted race around the planet.
As Thomson approaches the halfway mark he will have to navigate through an active area of high winds in a mid Atlantic depression in the next 24 hours, before the final sprint to the finish line in Les Sable d’Olonne France.
Keep up to date with Thomson’s progress in the race by following @ATRacing99 on Twitter.