At the age of 35, Thomas Ruyant is about to tackle his first Vendée Globe. The sailor from the North of France is confident in what he can do and sets off to convey certain values that are important to him.
You’ve never spent more than 25 days alone at sea and you’re about to do your first Vendée Globe. Does that leap worry you?
"I’m looking forward to it. I’m pleased to be able to spend so much time like that. It’s true however I’ll be visiting places I don’t know. So, I can’t say much about that. I’ll tell you more at the finish. I guess it won’t be like sailing in the Atlantic. How things go in the South will depend on how I fel and the condition of the boat after the first part of the race. That’s what worries me most. But when I talk to other sailors, if I ask them what was the hardest thing in their career, they tend to say sailing a Mini. I’ve done that, so the Vendée Globe should be fine.”
You appear confident…
"I have done a lot of physical training, but not psychological. I feel happy, as I know my boat is ready and that I’m up to scratch technically. It feels good now we have done the final checks on the boat. We’re doing the final details. There are so many different systems on board that even if I’m good at DIY, that is not enough. You have to be an engineer and mechanic, but technically, I’m starting to get to know my boat well."
"I’m the sort of person that doesn’t communicate at all. It’s not that I don’t like doing it, and sometimes I go over the top. Last year in the Jacques Vabre, we had a timetable, but I didn’t stick to it. It’s the same with my friends and family. I won’t be phoning home every day, but will send e-mails. I need to cut myself off and focus on sailing. So if I start phoning my mother every day, that isn’t going to work… We’ve already got our work cut out with other calls every couple of days. But I do enjoy doing videos. I find it hard to do live bits, but want to share the adventure.”
Interview with Guillaume de la Branche and Olivia Maincent / M&M