Alessandro Di Benedetto / Team Plastique
The Rhum as preparation for the Vendée Globe
When the Route du Rhum gets underway, fans of the Vendée Globe will be closely watching the battle between the nine skippers in the IMOCA class. But they should also keep an eye on three other categories, in which a certain number of sailors,…
Portrait of Alessandro di Benedetto: some amazing feats
Find out all about Alessandro Di Benedetto in this video. Now aged 43, the Franco-Italian skipper came eleventh in the last Vendée Globe, but that was far from being his first achievement.
Magazine: How the Italians have fared in the Vendée Globe
Vittorio Mallingri in 1992, Simone Bianchetti and Pasquale de Gregorio in 2000, Alessandro di Benedetto in 2012: since the start of the Vendée Globe, four Italian sailors have set off from Les Sables-d’Olonne, or in other words, one more…
Slideshow> All his pictures
Nationality : French and Italian
Résidence : Les Sables d'Olonne (Vendée)
Age : 41
Boat : Team Plastique
Website : www.teamplastique-voile.com
Vendée Globe Wins and Performances : First participation
French-Italian yachtsman Alessandro Di Benedetto is not like any other skipper. Alessandro was introduced to sailing by his parents when he was 6: “I can still remember the sailing stories they told me back then. They were self-taught and first sailed from Fiumicino to Sicily on a small dinghy, from one port to another and facing serious storms equipped with nothing more than a simple roadmap”. He graduated from the University of Palermo and managed to reconcile his passion for sailing with his geology studies as well as his work as a geologist in the oil sector and as an underwater archaeology operator. In 1992, he took the helm of his first sport catamaran with his father to sail from Sicily to Martinique. Other single-handed Atlantic Ocean crossings followed in 2001, 2002 and 2006.
In 2010, he sailed around the world non-stop, solo and without any assistance on a 6.5 meter boat – a real cockleshell on the ocean - following the Vendée Globe route. He dismasted just before reaching Cape Horn but still did not give up and built a makeshift mast that allowed him to reach Les Sables d’Olonne after 268 days at sea. That was a world first as the yacht was the smallest to have sailed around the world non-stop via the three capes and without assistance. The greatest skippers in the world were in awe, as Yves Parlier then explained: “No man had ever sailed around the world on such a small boat. Alessandro’s courage, perseverance and boldness are as big as the oceans he sailed on”. Alessandro Di Benedetto is a lonesome man who does not look like one. He has shared his adventure in a book he wrote, “Autour du monde sur un voilier de 6,50 mètres” (Around the world on a 6.5 meters boat) and started dreaming of a bona fide Vendée Globe on a 60-foot yacht. Thanks to Team Plastique and its network of partners, that dream has now come true. As a challenge lover, Alessandro may have his feet on dry land but his mind is doubtlessly still travelling…
Wins and Performances
World first non-stop single-handed round the world navigation without assistance recognized by the WSSRC and the ISAF
Circumnavigation on a 6.50-meter yacht, smallest boat ever to sail around the world.
Pacific Ocean crossing on a sport catamaran (from Yokohama, Japan, to San Francisco, USA), over 4,482 miles.
Atlantic Ocean crossing on a sport catamaran (from Las Palmas, Canary Islands, to Pointe à Pitre, Guadeloupe), over 2,700 miles.
2001: First non-stop solo navigation without assistance, from North Italy to Canary Islands, on a sports catamaran, over 1,700 miles.
1992-1993: Double-handed transatlantic navigation from Sicily to Martinique, on a sports catamaran (less than 6 metres long, without a cabin), over 2,300 miles.
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