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Shipwrecked sailor rescued after boat 'folded in two' in round-the-world race

Each males had been competing within the Vendée Globe, a 24,296-mile solo crusing race, when Escoffier hit hassle.

The 40-year-old Escoffier stated he used to be compelled to desert his yacht after a wave “folded the boat in two” off the Cape of Excellent Hope, South Africa, on Monday.

“You notice the photographs of shipwrecks? It used to be like that, however worse. In 4 seconds the boat nosedived, the bow folded at 90 levels,” he stated.

“I put my head down within the cockpit, a wave used to be coming. I had time to ship one textual content earlier than the wave fried the electronics. It used to be utterly loopy.”

Race organizers spoke back via diverting Le Cam on a rescue venture, with the Frenchman the closest competitor to the scene.

The 61-year-old had made preliminary visible and voice touch along with his compatriot but it surely took more than one makes an attempt to effectively rescue Escoffier within the early hours of Tuesday, amid robust winds and large waves.

“I advised myself I might keep on standby and stay up for sunlight. Then I assumed that at midnight it could be more straightforward to peer his mild,” Le Cam stated.

“One second when I used to be on deck I noticed a flash, however actually it used to be a mirrored image that flickered off a wave.

“However the extra I were given nearer to the sunshine I noticed it increasingly more. It’s wonderful since you transfer from depression to an unreal second immediately.”

Le Cam himself used to be rescued on this race in 2009 after spending 16 hours in his upturned yacht and Escoffier stated he used to be now not scared once he noticed his rival within the distance.

“Once I had observed Jean I used to be positive I might be stored,” he stated.

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French skipper Jean Le Cam diverted from the race to rescue Kevin Escoffier. French skipper Jean Le Cam diverted from the race to rescue Kevin Escoffier.

‘A miracle’

Organizers had escalated the operation via sending an additional 3 competition to lend a hand with the rescue however all the ones dispatched are unfastened to go back to the race and the misplaced hours will probably be deducted from their ultimate time.

“It’s the result we had been hoping for. It used to be pitch black, now not simple prerequisites however in the end the end result is sort of a miracle,” stated race director Jacques Caraes.

“It used to be now not simple to select Kevin up in the midst of the night time, Jean is a particularly skilled sailor and he all the time adopted our directions to the letter.

“We had a lot of unknowns, a lot of other positions. We needed to be sure always and imagine in issues. We had been fortunate, good fortune used to be on our facet.”

Dubbed the “Everest of the seas,” the Vendee Globe began from Les Sables d’Olonne at the November eight.

The winner of the 2016-2017 version used to be Armel Le Cléac’h, who finished the race in a file breaking time of 74 days, 3 hours, 35 mins and 46 seconds.

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