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DAMAGE : Mainsail torn for Amélie Grassi on La Boulangère Bio

While Amélie Grassi has been having a great race since leaving Lorient, the sailor had to slow her boat down considerably last night. During a downwind start, La Boulangère Bio's mainsail tore over a large area, forcing her to slow the monohull down to take stock of the situation. The sail, which is the boat's real engine and has a surface area of around 60m2, tore a little above the third reef over an area of around 50 cm along the leech and around 1.50 metres in length. Despite this damage, Amélie, currently 7th in the fleet, is continuing her race on The Transat CIC towards New York. She will be implementing a repair plan with the help of her shore team. She has already identified an area where she will be sailing in more manageable conditions and will be able to work on her mainsail. This probably won't be possible for another 48 hours.

From onboard, the skipper, whose spirits are high despite the disappointment, took the time to explain to us in the early hours of the morning the conditions in which the damage occurred and the consequences for the race, which she is leading with great enthusiasm and enthusiasm.

The conditions in which the sail tore:

‘It happened at 3h30 UT. There were around 30-35 knots of wind and around four metres of sea. I was sailing with a small gennaker and two reefs in the mainsail. The boat went downwind. In other words, in a wave, she took a surf and it was as if she had taken a bend and suddenly changed the side of the wind in the sails. But he didn't mean to do it! The pilot recovered the start on his own. And after all that, I realised that the sail was torn. »

The consequences of this damage :

‘The tear is big. I'm going to take a look at what I have on board to repair it. I have to be at the limit of what is necessary to repair. The bigger the tear, the harder it is to give the sail enough structure through the repair. But I think it's possible to repair, so we're going to make a plan. I'm going to sail for two days with just the headsail. I'm aiming for an area that's roughly on my route, an area where there won't be much wind for four hours. Four hours isn't much, but I can't think of anything better. I'll have to carry out the repairs at that point, hoping that I can get back to 75% of the boat's potential.