Hugo Boss

Hugo Boss is a Barcelona World Race classic; the only team to take part in all three editions of the double-handed, non-stop, round the world challenge. However, the team's key skipper, Alex Thomson was unable to take the start of the last edition of the race himself, at the last minute, due to appendicitis. The Briton had planned to join the race after his recovery but was forced to hand over the helm when his newborn son was diagnosed with a heart problem.

Alex is back in the race and this time his partner for the oceanic adventure is Spaniard Pepe Ribes, one of Spain's most experienced offshore sailors. The sailor from Alicante has taken part in four Volvo Ocean Races and finished the Barcelona World Race 2010/11 in fourth place on Estrella Damm with Alex Pella. He also holds the New York-Barcelona Transoceanic Sailing Record with Alex Pella and Stan Schreyer.

Alex is entering this Barcelona World Race in the wake of a brilliant third place finish in the Vendée Globe 2012/13. The British sailor, who was the youngest ever winner of the round the world Clipper Race at 25 years old, took to the podium of the Barcelona World Race 2007/08 alongside Andrew Cape. He has also achieved a number of sailing records.

This new pairing is a clear favourite for a place among the frontrunners in this edition of the double-handed, non-stop, round the world challenge. 


Alex Thomson

  • Place and date of birth: Bangor, North Wales (UK), 18th April 1974
  • Residence: Gosport, Hampshire (UK)
  • Marital status: Married, 2 children
  • Age at start: 40
  • Previous BWR entries: Yes, in the BWR 2007/08
  • Website:

Track Record

Round the world racing
  • Vendée Globe 2012/13 (3rd) on Hugo Boss, solo
  • Vendée Globe 2008/09 (retired) on Hugo Boss, solo
  • Barcelona World Race 2007/08 (2nd), with Andrew Cape, on Hugo Boss double-handed
  • Velux 5 Oceans Race 2006/07 (retired), solo
  • Vendée Globe 2004/05 (retired), solo
  • Clipper Race 1998/99 (1st)
  • West to East Atlantic record 2012, taking 8d 22h 8m
  • Transat B to B 2011 (4th) solo
  • Transat Jacques Vabre 2011 (2nd) with Guillermo Altadill, double-handed
Other offshore racing
  • Rolex Fastnet Race 2013 (3rd) on Hugo Boss
  • Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2011 (5th in real time), five crew


Pepe Ribes

  • Place and date of birth: Benissa, Alicante (Spain), 19th June 1971
  • Residence:  Barcelona (Spain)
  • Marital status:  Married, 1 child
  • Age at start:  43
  • Previous BWR entries:  Yes, in the BWR 2010/11
  • Website:

Track Record

Round the world racing
  • Volvo Ocean Race 2011/12 (4th) on Team Telefónica, fully-crewed
  • Barcelona World Race 2010/11 (4th), with Alex Pella, on Estrella Damm, double-handed
  • Volvo Ocean Race 2008/09 (3rd) on Telefonica Azul, fully-crewed
  • Volvo Ocean Race 2005/06 (6th) on Movistar, fully-crewed
  • Volvo Ocean Race 2001/02 (3rd) on Nautor Challenge/ Amer Sports One
  • IMOCA Ocean Masters New York to Barcelona Race 2014 (1st), with Ryan Breymaier, on Hugo Boss, double-handed
  • The Discovery Route-Desafío Mapfre 2013: The Christopher Columbus Discovery Route Record in 11d 7h 38m 40s, from Palos de la Frontera to San Salvador (Bahamas), on VO70, Mapfre, fully crewed
  • Transat Jacques Vabre 2009 (5th), with Alex Pella, on W Hotels, double-handed
  • NY-BCN Transoceanic Sailing Record: Record between New York and Barcelona set at 12 days, 6 hours, 3 minutes and 48 seconds, with Alex Pella and Stan Schreyer, on Estrella Damm
Other offshore racing
  • Istanbul Europa Race 2009 (5th), with Jean Pierre-Dick, on Paprec-Virbac 2, five crew
Other racing
  • Tour of Spain 2010 (3rd) on Estrella Damm, five crew
  • Three America’s Cup entries: 1999, 2004 and 2007
  • Breitling MedCup Circuit 2005 and 2006, on Bribón (TP52)
  • IMS Spanish Championship
  • IMS European Championship Punta Ala
  • Five entries in the Sardinia Cup: 2000, 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006

Hugo Boss


The Hugo Boss Alex Thomson and Pepe Ribes are taking to the Barcelona World Race 2014/15 is the former Virbac Paprec 3, winner of the previous edition of the race and a boat which stands out from the rest in terms of technical innovation. With Jean-Pierre Dick at the helm the boat finished in fourth place in the Vendée Globe 2012/13, despite sailing without a keel for 2,650 miles. Alex Thomson Racing purchased the boat and carried out a comprehensive refit, which included fitting a brand new keel. The IMOCA 60 was back on the water in April 2014 but en route to America for its first race, the IMOCA Ocean Masters New York to Barcelona Race, the yacht dismasted. However, following repairs the new Hugo Boss sealed a victory in the event, her first, with Pepe Ribes and Ryan Breymaier (in place of Alex, whose second child was due to be born) on board.

Technical details

  • Designer: VPLP / Verdier
  • Construction: Cookson Boats (New Zealand)
  • Launched: May 2010
  • Former names: Virbac Paprec 3
  • Length: 18.28 m.
  • Beam: 5.70 m.
  • Draught: 4.50 m.
  • Displacement: 7,500 kg.
  • Centreboards: 2 curved
  • Keel fin material: Steel
  • Bulb material: Lead
  • Height of mast: 29 m.
  • Rigging: Fixed mast 2 levels of spreaders and a single backstay
  • Upwind sail area: 300 m2
  • Downwind sail area:  590 m2
  • Number of sails on board:  10
  • Steering: Tiller
  • Rudder blades: Lift-up
  • Autopilots on board:  2
  • On-board energy source: Hydro generator