Photo: Maria Muiña/ MAPFRE

Desjoyeaux stands down from MAPFRE crew

Crew changes on board Spanish Volvo Ocean Race entry after dismal first leg

Monday November 10th 2014, Author: James Boyd, Location: South Africa

After coming home in last place on the opening leg of the Volvo Ocean Race some changes are being introduced to the crew line-up for the forthcoming legs.

Jean-Luc Nélias, winner of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012 with the French Groupama team, will come on board MAPFRE as navigator, replacing Nicolas Lunven. Nélias was already working with the team in Alicante as a weather analyst.

The sadder news is that two time Vendee Globe winner Michel Desjoyeaux will stand down from the sailing team although he will remain attached to the team. His replacement has yet to be announced. (Come on Damian Foxall - you know you want to...)

Desjoyeaux commented: “The decision to stop sailing with MAPFRE is a shared one. These aren’t easy decisions to make, but there are part of the life of a team too. We’ve seen similar stories in the past. These teams bring top athletes together, with strong personalities. It’s one of the parameters to manage in the Volvo Ocean Race. You got to orchestrate everything. Even if I won’t sail with MAPFRE anymore, I didn’t waste my time. I brought my own contribution to the project. It’s a great team, with really good guys onboard!”

The priority for the MAPFRE team now is to get the boat ready to sail as soon as possible. The boat has been lifted out of the water since her arrival in Cape Town and issues with her engine, batteries and other miscellaneous items are in the process of being fixed. MAPFRE will be back in the water tomorrow, Tuesday.


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