French skipper Clarisse Crémer denies cheating in Vendée Globe solo race

A French yachtswoman has denied accusations of cheating in the last Vendée Globe solo non-stop round the world sailing race.

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“We never cheated,” Clarisse Crémer insisted on Thursday in a joint statement with her husband Tanguy Le Turquais.

They were responding to an anonymous e-mail sent to the French Sailing Federation (FFVoile) last Sunday.

In it Crémer was accused of using information relayed to her by the land-based Le Turquais to help plot her route during the 45,000-kilometre 2020/2021 Vendée Globe.

Outside assistance of this nature is strictly forbidden in the rules of the mythic race that sets out and finishes at the French port of Les Sables-d’Olonne every four years.

An international jury has been established to investigate the affair based on screenshots of WhatsApp conversations between the couple sent to the federation in Sunday’s tip-off.

“During our chats which essentially concerned the intimacy between a couple, Tanguy never gave me the slightest bit of information that I didn’t have already,” insisted Crémer.

The 34-year-old, who skippered her yacht Banque Populaire into 12th, added: “No chat with him contributed to me changing course or making a strategic decision that would have had an impact on my race.

“All my performance decisions I made alone and without any assistance according to the rules.”

The couple questioned the motive and timing of their anonymous accuser with the pair among the 44 candidates for the next Vendée Globe starting in November, with only 40 allowed to take part.

They are considering legal action.

InterviewSailing through stereotypes: France’s Clarisse Crémer prepares for 2024 Vendée Globe


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