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Third boat out of Vendee Globe

The 27-year-old pulled out as he tried to head back to the western French port of Les Sable d'Olonne

The monohull “Bureau Valle” skippered by French Louis Burton leaves the harbour before the start of the 7th edition of the Vendee Globe, the solo non-stop round-the-world yacht race in Les Sables d’Olonne, western France. French sailor Louis Burton, whose boat Bureau Vallee was hit by a trawler this week, on Friday became the third participant to abandon the round-the-world race the Vendee Globe.

PARIS - French sailor Louis Burton, whose boat Bureau Vallee was hit by a trawler this week, on Friday became the third participant to abandon the round-the-world race the Vendee Globe, organisers said.

The 27-year-old pulled out as he tried to head back to the western French port of Les Sable d’Olonne to undergo repairs on a damaged shroud — rigging that holds up the mast — following the collision overnight Tuesday-Wednesday.

The collision happened about 400 nautical miles (460 miles, 741 kilometres) off the coast of the Portuguese capital, Lisbon, but wind conditions were such that he instead had to go to Corunna in northwest Spain and abandon, organisers said.

Twenty skippers set off from Les Sables d’Olonne last Saturday but two, including Burton, have pulled out following collisions with trawlers, while one of the favourites, Marc Guillemot, also quit after the keel of his boat was badly damaged.

The only woman in the race, British sailor Samantha Davies, dismasted on Thursday evening but was unhurt. The incident happened in strong winds about 130 nautical miles northeast of Madeira.

France’s Armel Le Cleac’h was leading the prestigious solo, non-stop race at 0400 GMT, 7.5 nautical miles ahead of compatriot Francois Gabart and Switzerland’s Bernard Stamm.

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