French skipper Kevin Escoffier had to abandon his Imoca class 60 monohull PRB in the Atlantic oiff the Cape of Good Hope / © AFP
French Vendee Globe yachtsman Kevin Escoffier was reported "safe and sound" after being rescued from the Atlantic off the Cape of Good Hope by rival skipper Jean Le Cam in his monohull Hubert on Tuesday.
The skipper of PRB had to abandon his ship Monday afternoon and had been floating in a life raft.
"A huge relief. Kevin is well onboard Hubert safe and sound," Le Cam tweeted.
Vendee Globe organisers said they had received a message from Le Cam informing them of the successful rescue at around 0100 GMT.
"No one has yet been able to talk with the PRB skipper who just appeared smiling, bundled up in his survival suit alongside Jean Le Cam," the organisers said in an online statement.
Both sailors appeared well, they added, and said the news was a "huge relief for the whole team".
Escoffier endured swells of five metres with water temperatures of 10 Celsius (50 Fahrenheit) before his rescue.
- Distress beacon -
In third place, he had triggered his distress beacon on Monday while sailing in the 40th Roaring, an area known for its breaking waves and strong winds.
Four skippers had left on Monday in search of Escoffier, with le Cam first to reach the approximate zone of his distress beacon, at 5:00 pm local time.
The three other competitors invited by the organisation to deviate to reinforce the research were Yannick Bestaven (Maitre Coq), Boris Herrmann (Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco) and Sebastien Simon (Arkea Paprec).
Le Cam and all competitors involved in the rescue operation will be able to return to the race after the recovery, with the hours taken deducted from their overall time in the round-the-world race.
The 40-year-old Escoffier was sailing a new style of "foiler" or "flying boat", which lift out of the water on a foil in high winds.
The foilers have featured strongly on the list of vessels having serious maintenance issues with Welsh skipper Alex Thomson already out of the race.
The Welsh skipper was one of favourites at the start and the early dominant leader, but retired after several days spent carrying out repairs in a desperate bid to keep his boat Hugo Boss on target.
The approximately 24,296 nautical miles solo non-stop round-the-world race began on November 9.
Due to the coronavirus, the start took place without the hundreds of thousands of enthusiasts who gathered waterside four years ago to see the race off in a carnival atmosphere.
The single-handed competition is due to end mid-January.