News in brief

Giancarlo Pedote : A boat to be there at the start in 2020

Giancarlo Pedote : A boat to be there at the start in 2020

The Italian sailor Giancarlo Pedote has just acquired Jean-Pierre Dick's former Virbac-Paprec aboard which Yann Eliès will race in the 2018 Route du Rhum. The boat will be made available to the italian sailor in january 2019. His faithful sponsor Prysmian Group, who has been at his side now for several years, will enable him to train for the 2020 Vendée Globe before he finds additional partners to allow him to compete.

Giancarlo Pedote has spent most of his ocean-racing career in the Mini circuit, but he has also raced in the Figaro and Class40 circuit. He finished in second place the 2013 Mini-Transat aboard a prototype designed by David Raison. A married father of two, he currently lives in Brittany. The world of IMOCA sailing is not really a discovery for him, as he was Fabrice Amedeo co-skipper in the last Transat Jacques Vabre.

Meilhat and Gahinet take Monaco Globe honours

Meilhat and Gahinet take Monaco Globe honours
© Yacht Club de Monaco

Paul Meilhat and Gwénolé Gahinet (SMA) are the first sailors to have their names on the top prize as winners of the Globe Series, the new IMOCA world championship. The duo won the Monaco race early this Thursday morning, June 7. They were welcomed back to the dock by Prince Albert II. After more than 3 days and 19 hours of sailing, on a shortened but nonetheless exhausting course which was made all the more nerve wracking because of the unstable weather situation, they beat Isabelle Joschke and Alain Gautier (Monin) to second with Fabrice Amedeo and Eric Péron (Newrest - Art & Fenêtres).

"It was extremely physical and tough on the nerves", explained Meilhat, who won the Bermudas 1000 Race just a few weeks ago. "It reminded me of what I experienced racing on a Figaro in the Mediterranean. In terms of the race, it was crazy with a lot of action! Whether you were ahead or behind, it was never over. But there's nothing more interesting in terms of adrenaline. You feel alive when you race in the Med!" It is a first big win of the season for Paul Meilhat on his conventionally configured foil-less IMOCA. Meilhat is on the look out for a replacement partner to participate in the next Vendée Globe.

Monaco Globe Series :
1/ SMA (Meilhat/Gahinet) in 3d 19h and 17m

2/ Monin (Joschke/Gautier) 3d 21h 3m 50s

3/ Newrest – Art & Fenêtres (Amedeo/Péron) 3d 21h 11m 10s

4/ Kilcullen Team Ireland (Mulloy/Ruyant) 3d 22h 25m

5/ Boulogne Billancourt (Le Diraison/Maslard) 3d 23h 45m 03s

6/ Groupe Setin (Cousin/Roura) 3 d 23h 32m 38s (+15 mins)

7/ Malizia (Herrmann/Casiraghi) 4d 00h 03m

8/ Bureau Vallée 2 (Burton/Hubert) 4d 01h 29m 26s

9/ 4MyPlanet2 (Barrier/Quiroga) 4d 02h 44m 30s (+5 minutes)

Setting A Course for 2020

With one eye looking forwards to the 2020 edition, the new teaser video for the Vendée Globe encapsulates the magic of 30 years of the historic solo non stop race around the world. The teaser is targeted at new partners who might want to come on board for the next edition of the race, to become involved. The short video really captures the emotions, it shows the moods and the drama of start day, the doubts, the fears, the anticipation and the the departure out the famous channel where hundreds of thousands of well wishers turn out. 
The Vendée Globe is also now a huge, significant media event, an ocean race which mobilizes and engages hundreds of thousands of people day after day, through social media, the event and specialist websites as well as huge coverage on traditional print, news and sports media. In just three short minutes it says it all, delivering a short, sharp reminder of what the Vendée Globe means.


Bermuda 1000 Race, close finish, Meilhat wins from Davies

Bermuda 1000 Race, close finish, Meilhat wins from Davies
© Ricardo Pinto / Bermudes 1000 Race

The competitors of the Bermuda 1000 Race between Douarnenez and Cascais have all finished safely, that is with the exception of Louis Burton (Bureau Vallée 2) who decided to return back to Lorient because of a persistent abnormal noise under the hull of his boat.
The main conclusions from this first race of 2018 are:

- Paul Meilhat (SMA) is still a top contender. Leading the fleet from the start of the race he was able to draw out the very best of his conventionally set up monohull and hold off the foilers.

- Sam Davies (Initiatives Coeur) proved that on her return to solo racing she can be considered a good prospect for success in the next Vendée Globe. She finished less than 15 minutes behind Meilhat despite having to overcome some technical problems which compromised her at the start of the race.

- For Fabrice Amedeo (Newrest - Art & Fenêtres) and Manuel Cousin (Setin Group) their first objective above all was to qualify for the next Route du Rhum. Tick. Done.

- Damien Seguin (Apicil Group) who sailed two up with Jean Le Cam was able to optimize the handling of his Imoca by benefiting from the presence of Le Cam who, a veteran of four participations in the Vendée Globe who lead the refit and reconfiguration of Seguin’s boat.

Courses are now set for the Mediterranean and the Monaco Globe Series which runs from 1st to 8th June. Several teams have planned to take advantage of this outing on the Med, the so called Big Blue, which include hospitality days on the French Riviera.

A Better Looking Horizon for Yann Eliès

A Better Looking Horizon for Yann Eliès
© Yvan Zedda

There is no certainty that he will be at the start of the next Vendée Globe but Yann Eliès has taken a a big step forward. Despite his undeniable talent and a very solid track record, fourth in the last edition and three times winner of La Solitaire du Figaro, he seemed to be struggling to find a partner. But now at least he is guaranteed to be at the start of this Autumn’s classic Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe.
The rental company UCAR have committed to the project which is run by Jean-Pierre Dick with whom Eliès won the last Transat Jacques Vabre. And it is on that same boat that Eliès will line up when the race starts from Saint-Malo.
But the ambition of Yann Elies remains the same, to find enough money to build a new boat and take victory into Les Sables d’Olonne in January 2021.

Armel Tripon: a new contender and a new boat

Armel Tripon: a new contender and a new boat

It is more and more obvious that the 2020 Vendée Globe is encouraging some innovative projects to be developed. After Jérémie Beyou, Sébastien Simon and Charlie Dalin, Armel Tripon has now announced the construction of a new boat. After moving up through all the classes involved in ocean racing (winner of the Mini Transat and competitor in the Figaro, Class40, Multi 50 circuits), Armel is now preparing to tackle the Vendée Globe.

His approach is different in two ways, as the construction of his boat is bringing together a boatyard in Nantes, Black Pepper® Yachts, which specialises in large cruising vessels with the designer, Sam Manuard, who so far has been known for his particularly well performing Mini and Class40 designs.
However, Armel Tripon is not leaping into the unknown. The yard is used to building high-tech carbon constructions. On top of that, Sam Manuard, who is unusually both a boat designer and ocean racer, clearly has  a lot of knowledge in this field.

The successful experiments with foils in the 2016-2017 appear to have created a lot of excitement, which should make the 2020-2021 edition a major moment in the history of the race.

Enda Completes His Remarkable Odyssey

Enda Completes His Remarkable Odyssey
© Le Souffle Du Nord / Projet Imagine

Finally he made it. On Easter Sunday Irish solo racer Enda O'Coineen, 63, skipper and team ambassador and for Le Souffle du Nord and Team Ireland, who both had to give up their Vendée Globe - yesterday finished sailing around the world.

The solo racer writes a new chapter in the sailing history of Ireland. He took 66 days between New Zealand and Les Sables d'Olonne to finally finish off his own 'race'.  As well as completing his personal mission, to complete the circumnavigation after losing his mast off New Zealand there has also been a strong initiative of solidarity with the association Le Souffle du Nord which also had to stop into New Zeland.

Enda's mast came down on January 1st 2017 when he was around 200 miles south of New Zealand. After retiring into New Zealand he combined with the programme of Thomas Ruyant's Le Souffle du Nord. The rebuilt-rebranded Team, Le Souffle du Nord Kilcullen Team Ireland was launched from Christchurch.

Since leaving New Zealand on 26th January O'Coineen has covered the returning 13,000 miles as a symbol of solidarity between the teams.
"After 66 days alone at sea since New Zealand I am elated. It's incredible. I'm overwhelmed... and now I'm surrounded by thousands of people who gave me an amazing welcome into Les Sables d'Olonne. It's an honour to be here and to be representing Le Souffle du Nord Kilcullen Team Ireland. The support, interest and encouragement has been great.”
“This adventure really started in January 1st 2015 when we decided to 'Go for It' and to take on this challenge. Preparations have gobbled- up all the ranges of personal emotion, physical challenge, personal resource, fear and jubilation in between. There is no logic to the logic. And right to the finish line for the final week, rounding the Azores and the North West corner of Spain, the storm crossing the Bay of Biscay, kept me on edge."

Enda O'Coineen on the road back to the equator

After 42 days at sea since leaving New Zealand, the Irish sailor Enda O’Coineen continues his solo journey to return home with the IMOCA Le Souffle du Nord-Kilcullen Team Ireland. Enda is presently off the coast of Brazil. O’Coineen started the last Vendée Globe but retired into New Zealand when the mast of his IMOCA broke. The 63 year old describes himself as a pure amateur adventurer is striving to complete his round the world circumnavigation on the boat which was previously Thomas Ruyant’s and which also retired into New Zealand. 

He reports" I'm fine. I think a lot and say to myself that I am very lucky to be able to do what I am doing. In 1000 miles, I will be back at the equator, then there is the climb up the  northern Atlantic for the finish, the climax into Les Sables d'Olonne. "

Enda has inspired many, such as Alex Thomson ("We are in the pure human adventure, in the inner journey of a man ..."), Eric Bellion ("Enda is the definition of the free spirited man He did not do the Vendée Globe to be in the spotlight and he proves it today. ") Or even Thomas Ruyant himself (" I find that the marriage of Le Souffle du Nord and Team Ireland is a great success. "


Enda O Coineen is expected late March - early April for his passage into the famous channel of Les Sables d'Olonne. No doubt the public will be present to salute his tenacity and spirit. 

To find out more:

Charlie Dalin to compete in the Vendée Globe

After displaying the colours of MACIF for four years in the Figaro circuit, Charlie Dalin, French offshore racing champion in 2016 and French vice-champion in 2017, has just been entrusted with the helm of a new generation IMOCA by APIVIA Mutuelle, a subsidiary of the MACIF Group. 

A new boat will be built in 2019 in order to allow one of the rising stars of the new generation to aim for victory. This is once again proof of the continuing attraction of the Vendée Globe, as we already know that four new boats will be there on the start line in 2020 (Hugo Boss, Arkema – Paprec, Charal and Apivia Mutuelle). For Charlie Dalin, this is the culmination of what he has been aiming for. Originally from Le Havre, Charlie took his first steps in the Mini-Transat before succeeding in the Figaro circuit. The Vendée Globe was clearly one of his priorities. He will be getting a boat that matches his ambitions. The support of the subsidiary of the MACIF group should, also enable Charlie Dalin to benefit from the experience and know-how of François Gabart and his team.

Simon’s maiden innings

The young skipper Sébastien Simon, aged 28, will be competing in the next Vendée Globe at the helm of an IMOCA monohull flying the colours of Arkea-Paprec, which will be designed by Juan Kouyoumdjian and with a project manager, Vincent Riou. Before moving to his new class, Sébastien Simon, 3rd in the French elite offshore racing championship in 2017, will race with Morgan Lagravière on a Figaro boat in the Transat AG2R – La Mondiale, which starts on 22nd April.

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