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Fellow competitor to rescue capsized French skipper

An operation is under way to rescue Lalou Roucayrol, the French Route du Rhum skipper who capsized 1,000 nautical miles east of Guadeloupe early Wednesday morning.

A photograph issued by Roucayrol’s team (see above) taken from a spotter plane shows the 54-year-old skipper sitting on the upturned central hull of his boat wearing blue trousers and a red sailing jacket.

The plan to recover Roucayrol from the upturned Multi50, Arkema, will involve fellow skipper Pierre Antoine, leader of the Rhum Multi division.

Roucayrol had originally told his team he wished to remain with his boat until the tug, which will take approximately two days to reach the area, arrived.

But he has clearly now changed his mind or been persuaded that he should be picked up by Antoine first, then switch to the tug when it arrives.

On board his 50ft trimaran, OLMIX, Antoine is making just over 11 knots this morning and is expected in the area within 24 hours.

Thursday morning Antoine was 250 nautical miles east-southeast of Roucayrol, who is safe and well and spending most of the time inside the main hull of his capsized craft.

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