Pip Hare & OneSails collaborate to recycle Vendée sails
British sailor Pip Hare and sailmaker OneSails are working together to recycle the sails that Hare used in her race around the globe, in a bid to improve the sustainability of the materials used in offshore racing.
The OneSails 4T Forte composite sails travelled with Hare over 24,000 miles to the finish line of her first Vendée Globe non-stop circumnavigation in 2021. They are the only certified, fully recyclable sails on the market, and will now be made into pens.
“As the sails will not fit my new boat, we have decided to put them through the recycling process, and then make them into something else we can hopefully use on my next campaign,” says Hare, who was the eighth woman in history to complete the Vendée Globe. “It’s an exciting project and sets a benchmark for the sailing world.”
John Parker, head of OneSails GBR (East) adds: “Performance is obviously the priority when designing and making sails, but we’re also conscious of what happens to them once they eventually reach the end of their life. For Pip’s sails we chose 4T Forte for its high performance, durable and recyclable properties. It’s cutting edge technology but we are seeing it become more popular as people increasingly look at their eco-credentials.”
Over the last few months, Medallia’s sails were put through a machine that churned out tiny rice-like polyethylene pellets, which were then remoulded into pens.
“I’ve spent all my professional life on or near the ocean and I’ve seen first-hand the increasing amount of plastic and rubbish floating around out there,” says Hare. “Like so many others, I want to do whatever I can to tackle this problem and have been looking at ways I can make my campaign as sustainable as possible. And I’m not alone – it’s something that my fellow sailors and race organisers are also making a priority.”
The IMOCA Class has also revealed changes to the class rules for 2021-2025 that are designed to help limit environmental impact and require teams to use sustainable materials.
Hare, who has been actively involved in developing the IMOCA class’ sustainability charter, says: “We’ve got some big targets heading into 2024. Things like eradicating the use of single-use plastic both on and offshore, using recycled or recyclable materials and looking at working with freeze-dried food manufacturers to try and get more sustainable packaging. We’re looking at everything and thinking how we can make our sport greener, cleaner and more sustainable.”