25 November 2012 - 18:19 • 1472 views

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Gamesa skipper Mike Golding tells about how he feels about Vincent Riou's retirement and not being able to help the French sailor.

"I crossed close to Vincent onboard PRB last night as he headed west assessing the possibility of repair following the collision with an adrift buoy.

It’s hard to pass so close by his position, knowing how much work it has taken him and his team (and all of us) just to be out here, knowing also how crushed his sprits and expectations will be at this moment  - it is very sad - and  every fibre of you just wants to stop and offer him help.

He and I may well not be on each others' Christmas card list, and to be frank I have little to offer that could really help, but it just feels this should be the spirit of a mega race like the Vendée where if you cut to the bone of it we are always each other's last line of support.

Perhaps the clincher, though, is that I could not give, and he could not accept any help, as this would constitute outside assistance – we would be disqualified from the race. There is a saying in England 'the law is an ass'. Perhaps at times like these, it would help if our laws would allow it [to offer assistance]. It just seems so wrong to leave a man behind."