As reported by Eurosail News, the Vendee Globe Race has announced a significant expansion of the race by adding a second devision. Whereas the non-stop around the world race has always been solely for singlehanders, the new division will be for double-handed crews. Like the singlehanders, the doublehanded crews will sail IMOCA 60s, with with foils or without. According to Jacques Caraes, Vendee Globe race director, the addition of more sailors will increase the human interest level for the race and give race sponsors more value for their investment.
Charlie Enright, of 11th Hour Racing, gave a different reason for why adding another sailor on each boat is a good idea: “…it’s a safety plus. With so many loose containers just below the surface… having a second watch on board who’s not completely sleep deprived is all good. You just have to hope you don’t find out your crew mate is a horrid bellend. Or that you are.”
This announcement comes as the Vendee Globe celebrates a successful