2 die in accident at finish of Route du Rhum sailing race

PARIS (AP) — Two people died Wednesday when a motorboat following the Route du Rhum solo trans-Atlantic sailing race capsized off the coast of Guadeloupe, just as the winner was reaching the finish line, race organizers said.

The exact circumstances of the accident are being determined. The boat had been carrying 11 people in the bay of Pointe-a-Pitre when the accident occurred, and rescuers quickly came but two people were already in cardiac arrest, according to regional broadcaster Guadeloupe 1ere.

The two were members of OC Sport Pen Duick, one of the race organizers. The company and regional authorities said in a statement that they shared their “deepest and most sincere condolences” to the victims’ families.

Charles Caudrelier won the race in record time, arriving at the Caribbean island Wednesday after 6 days, 19 hours, 47 minutes, 25 seconds at sea. The 3,542-nautical mile race began last week from the French port city of Saint-Malo.

The race is held every four years. Veteran French skipper Francis Joyon won the last race in 2018 in 7 days, 14 hours and 21 minutes.


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