IDEC back in France
After IDEC's capsize mid-August shortly having departed New York on an attempt on the singlehanded west to east transatlantic record, so Francis Joyon has managed to repatriate IDEC back to France. Joyon achieved this with IDEC sailing on her own bottom under jury rig.
Work has begun on the giant trimaran in Vannes and she should be returned to the water this coming spring.
"For a capsize, the damage was limited, comparable to a dismasting," commented Joyon. "We saved a lot of things that will be reused." This was a great result considering the boat that could so easily have been lost following her capsize. For example, if Joyon had left the upturned boat, as he was requested to by the US Coast Guard, before the representatives of their French equivalent, the Cross Griz-Nez (who coordinated the rescue mission) and of the Navy, managed to convince them otherwise.
On Monday Joyon went to the Hotel de la Marine in Paris, accompanied by Patrice Lafargue, CEO of IDEC, to thank for the members of the Cross Griz-Nez and the navy for their valuable support. "We have promised them trip on board" said Joyon"and as there are many sailing enthusiasts among them, they enthusiastically agreed."
IDEC survived her capsize with help from American supporters like Phil Steggall, Jean-Pierre Mouligné and Rich Wilson. "All at some point in our careers have experienced this and the 'club of capszie survivors' worked very well," said Joyon. "First it was necessary to protect the boat from the approach of Hurricane Irene. That meant preparing her to withstand 80 knot winds." Joyon also had to put in a few days of work to rebuild the dog house, which was crushed by the capsize. The mast was broken in two in the capsize, but both pieces were recovered and they managed to save three of the five sails.
Next, Joyon had to make a round trip of France to gather a few extra parts in order for him to set up a jury rig to get the boat back to France.
"We managed to build a jury rig with the top section of the mast and recut the sails to fit," says Joyon. "With the help of Hunt Construction, we were able to step a 16m high mast [32m normally]. Then we tried it at sea then it only remained to wait for a weather window."
Returning to France under jury rig avoided the expense of shipping the giant trimaran as deck cargo, Joyon maintaining his 'Glenans' philosophy: to try to resolve problems ourselves, intelligently and without cost. Together with Roger and Didier Ganovelli Rouzeaud and Lawrence Apollo who he met in Brooklyn, the crew only took 16 days to bring IDEC back to France under jury rig.
Now on the right side of the Atlantic, the saws and sanders are out. "We will rebuild parts of the cross beam where we found delamination, which is not due to the capsize and rebuild the dog house and a few other little things like that," says Joyon. It is likely that the two parts of the mast will be rejoined by the mast's builder at Lorima.
"They need a period of three months to complete this operation," concludes Joyon. "From next spring, we will be ready to sail again."