Christophe Bullens Retires from VELUX 5 OCEANS

Belgian sailor Christophe Bullens has withdrawn from the 28th VELUX 5 OCEANS after a broken mast track thwarted his latest attempt to set sail from Cape Town, South Africa.The setback was the latest in a long list of technical difficulties for the 49-year-old solo sailor. His troubles began before the race’s start, when his first Eco 60, Five Oceans of Smiles, was dismasted en
Author:
Publish date:
Bullens-photo

Belgian sailor Christophe Bullens has withdrawn from the 28th VELUX 5 OCEANS after a broken mast track thwarted his latest attempt to set sail from Cape Town, South Africa.

The setback was the latest in a long list of technical difficulties for the 49-year-old solo sailor. His troubles began before the race’s start, when his first Eco 60, Five Oceans of Smiles, was dismasted en route to La Rochelle, France. Four days before the race, Bullens bought the yacht Artech from Jean-Baptiste Dejeanty and sailed a 48-hour qualification passage.

He started the race on October 24, but suffered a host of problems in the following weeks, including a split mainsail, failed electronics, an onboard flood and a collision with a whale. The broken mast track came after two prior attempts to leave Cape Town for Wellington, New Zealand.

“All the problems encountered have finally beaten me and my boat, and have prevented me from continuing,” Bullens said, “Unfortunately I have no other choice than to withdraw from the race. It is not reasonable, and even dangerous, to go on.”

Race director Dave Adams praised Bullens’ tenacity, calling him a role model for the sport. “It is sad to see Christophe withdraw from racing but his decision is a sensible and reasoned one given the conditions he will face in the Southern Ocean and beyond.,” Adams said, “We wish Christophe the best of luck for the future and hope to see him on the start line of the Velux 5 OCEANS in 2014. “

The VELUX 5 OCEANS is a grueling solo race in which competitors cover 30,000 nautical miles in five ocean sprints. Four competitors—Derek Hatfield, Brad Van Liew, Zbigniew Gutkowski and Chris Stanmore-Major—remain in the race.

For more information and race coverage, click here.

Related

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comGuaranteed result What you see on the end of this halyard isn’t a beautiful Flemish Eye worked by a rigger, but it will make a big difference when you have to “mouse” a line through the mast. If the ...read more

dometicadler-700x

How to: Upgrading Your Icebox

The time has come when the prospect of cold drinks and long-term food storage has you thinking about upgrading your icebox to DC-powered refrigeration. Duncan Kent has been there and done that, and has some adviceFresh food must be kept at a refrigerated temperature of 40 degrees ...read more

Jet-in-Belize

Cruising: Evolution of a Dream

There’s a time to go cruising and a time to stop. As Chris DiCroce found, you don’t always get to choose those timesAlbert Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, ...read more

01a-rosemary-anchored-at-Qooqqut,-inland-from-Nuuk

Cruising: A Passage to Greenland

When a former winner of the Whitbread Round the World Race invites you to sail the Northwest Passage, there is only one sensible answer. No.More adventurous types might disagree, but they weren’t the ones facing frostbite of the lungs or the possibility of having the yacht’s hull ...read more

Allures-459-2018

Boat Review: Allures 45.9

Allures is not a name on the tip of many American sailors’ tongues, but it should be. After the debut of its 39-footer last year, the French company has made another significant entry into the U.S. midrange market with the Allures 45.9, an aluminum-hulled cruiser-voyager with ...read more

ZP-Sail-Away-pic-No

Jury-Rigging on Charter

A little know-how goes a long way on vacationThey say cruising is just fixing your boat in exotic places. Maybe that’s why so many people prefer to charter. After a week of sailing you pack your bags and step off your charter boat without another care in the world, leaving the ...read more