Concern over Groupama's structure

Franck Cammas' Course des Phares race favourite to pull into Lorient for checks

Tuesday May 28th 2002, Author: James Boyd, Location: France
Course des Phares race favourite and Transat Jacques Vabre winner Groupama is being forced to pull into Lorient after the crew noticed the beginnings of a structural problem with one of the crossbeams.

The team are looking at making a repair and continuing, but it seems more likely that they will play it safe and carry out thorough checks and X-rays of the carbon fibre cross beam and will therefore pull out of the race. As one spokesman summed it up - "they are all playing it a bit safe, because they are worried about breaking their boats before the Route du Rhum".

The scare comes following the mysterious beam breakage on Banque Populaire prior to the start of the Courses des Phares, which saw her forward beam break, thereby causing the aft beam to break too.

Groupama is expected back at her compound near Le Defi Areva base in Lorient this evening, where a technical team including designer Vincent Lauriot Prevost will be waiting.

Below: Groupama

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