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Quick nap proves costly for sailor in Route du Rhum race

Then he overslept.

Thomson — who like many sailors sleeps in 20-minute bursts during the day — had forgotten to fee his shockwave watch, specifically designed to liberate an electrical surprise to wake him up.

As an alternative, the 44-year-old from Gosport, England aroused from sleep to the thud of a broken stern, bow and foil at the starboard facet of his 60-foot Hugo Boss yacht — and the pangs of a damaged middle.

“It is a actual disgrace for me and the group to be within the place that we’re in,” an emotional Thomson informed journalists on Friday.

With out a selection however to start out his engine to flee the tough terrain, Thomson prompted a 24-hour penalty and has all however dashed plans for a champagne birthday party.

Even though he crossed the end line in Pointe-a-Pitre at the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe first on Friday, the penalty approach Thomson will most probably position out of the highest 3 finishers of the race which started on November four off the coast of Saint Malo, in northern France.

“The jury has determined that I’ve a 24-hour penalty which is able to imply I can no longer win the race,” he authorized.

“How do I believe about that? Smartly, I feel this is very reasonable as a result of I do not believe I must win the race after hitting Guadeloupe.”

Sailor Alex Thomson on how 'car crash' image keeps him on even keel  Sailor Alex Thomson on how 'car crash' image keeps him on even keel

‘They do not suppose you might be coming again’

Thomson completed 2nd and 3rd in consecutive Vendee Globe around-the-world solo races. He spent an astonishing 74 days at sea within the 2016-2017 version.

“In many ways it is more straightforward as a result of it is not moderately as daunting,” Thomson informed CNN Game days prior to embarking at the Course du Rhum, “however on different hand, there is not any downtime and you’ll’t make a mistake — so it’s kind of unforgiving,

“You are nonetheless racing around the Atlantic by yourself. The Vendee Globe is sort of gladiatorial — part one million folks flip up at first, almost certainly as a result of they do not suppose you might be coming again.

“This one, I do not consider no longer coming again. I consider consuming rum within the Caribbean in a couple of weeks.

“It is a other problem, however it is not a recreational cruise. The boats have develop into quicker and quicker, in idea it is a downwind race which is beautiful demanding, there is not any time to get right into a rhythm and you can be extra drained than ever prior to.”

That speak of fatigue proved prophetic and spelled Thomson’s undoing.

Thomson deliberate to sleep in 20 to 40 minute bursts each and every two to 4 hours all the way through this race, and made observe of an alarm clock stressed out to a noisy horn to wake him up.

READ: Alex Thomson: ‘Other people suppose we are loopy’

In case he used to be nonetheless asleep 5 mins later, the shockwave watch used to be designed to ship a light however “no longer very delightful” electrical surprise.

Unfortunately, that machine failed when Thomson slept all through the horn on Thursday, and the modern day chance of no longer charging one’s virtual software stuck as much as him.

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