The crew in the rescue helicopter
Last night at 2343 UT, Franck Cammas, skipper of the trimaran Groupama 3 engaged in the Jules Verne Trophy, a prize for the fastest circumnavigation of the world by any type of yacht with no restrictions on the size of the crew, alerted the shore crew to the capsize of the maxi trimaran.
"We have just capsized. The leeward float broke in two, leading to the breakage of the two beams and then the subsequent capsize. The crew is all together, taking refuge inside the central hull of Groupama 3. None of the 10 crew are injured. There are 5 to 7 metre waves and 25 to 30 knot winds. The seas are breaking and for the time being we're not putting anyone outside".
One plane and then two helicopters were sent to the zone three hours after the capsize. The 10 sailors were all airlifted by helicopter at 0330 (UT) and then repatriated to Dunedin, on New Zealand's South Island.
Two images of Groupama 3 before the accident (after 24 days at sea they had one day lead over current record)
Groupama 3 - Franck Cammas ©
Yvan Zedda ©