Vendee Globe - Essential items to take on board

by ISAF 
Chow down
©V.Curutchet/Dark Frame /Virbac-Paprec
There are only a few weeks to the start of the Vendee Globe and as the clock ticks down, the twenty skippers are nearing the end of their preparations and focusing on essential items to take on board, one of them being food.

Spending months at sea, alone, the skippers have to pack smart and the menu throughout this year will feature plenty of freeze dried food as Florence Juillard, responsible for Jean-Pierre Dick's food explains, 'We are only taking enough portions of food for the amount of time the skipper thinks he will be at sea. And to keep the weight to a minimum, we mostly stick to dried-frozen food.

'Fresh products that have been prepared specifically for the day of the start are eaten first - for example a fresh salad with pasta, ham, nuts, cherry tomatoes, cheese and dried sausage followed by fresh fruits. But Jean-Pierre soon has to switch to frozen-dried food until the end of the race.'

In preparation for the race the sailors spend a period of time adjusting their diets to run level with what they'll eat throughout the race. They also test and validate each dish of every food that's loaded on board.

No food is forbidden and some treats will be a welcome reward for special occasions as Juillard added, 'Jean-Pierre is taking Saint Michel and Bonne Maman biscuits with him, chocolate from a Ploemeur chocolate factory and very good tea. In this Vendée Globe, Jean-Pierre will take a small bottle of Mumm Champagne with him.'

As the sailors experience different climates and conditions throughout the Vendee Globe various intakes of food will be required at various stages. 5,000 calories a day will be required at certain points, a significant hike considering the average input is between 2,200 and 2,700 per day.

On the typical meal that Dick will partake in during his voyage Juillard said, 'In the morning, there is a dried-frozen cooked breakfast with some bread, jam and honey. Lunch can be dried-frozen lamb or pasta, 50 grams of ham and dried-frozen dessert, like custard pie. Snacks are usually an energy drink, a chocolate bar and dried fruits. As for dinner, it can be Frozen-dried Pasta Milanese, cheese and a red berries yoghurt.'

Dick will be on the starting line on 10 November alongside 19 other competitors who would have all gone through the same process.

Vendee Globe website

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