He is back. Fourth in the last Barcelona World Race where he sailed with Alex Pella on the Farr designed Estrella Damm, Pepe Ribes reveals that almost as soon as he finished the last race he had the hunger to do it again, but this time better, faster and more efficient. With a programme which has the potential to win the dual handed race around the world.
Stewart Hosford runs one of the biggest and most prominent IMOCA race teams through the 5 Degrees West company, which in this instance look after Alex Thomson’s Hugo Boss and Neutrogena, the Farr design which took third in the Vendée Globe in the hands of Alex Thomson. Hosford joined Alex Thomson just before their slightly turbulent start to the last Barcelona World Race. As well as expanding and optimising their commercial interests, he was instrumental in the changes which massively improved reliability, ensuring that Alex brought an older, but well proven IMOCA 60 on to the Vendée Globe podium, thereby producing a much needed race result just on time. Hugo Boss have committed to Alex for the foreseeable future, ensuring that he now has a new Hugo Boss – a VPLP-Verdier design – in build.
Three Barcelona World Race IMOCA 60s have passed the Equator early this morning with just two hours and thirty minutes separating them.Hugo Boss, Alex Thomson and Pepe Ribes, crossed at 0150hrs UTC this Monday morning. At 0300hrs UTC – about 40 miles further west – Neutrogena, Guillermo Altadill and José Muñoz crossed.
Yesterday evening about 1900pm, the conditions were 15-17 knots, Southern Hemisphere trade winds, pretty light. We were sailing with the mainsail and J2, little waves, almost one metre waves, and we had the J1 hoisted, furled and prepared to drop.
In recent days we have had periods of using the J1, which is the largest forward sail, or the J2, which has less surface area, and was on the forestay holding the mast.