After more than two months of standby for Trophée Jules Verne attempt. Today at 1200 the multihull Max Banque Populaire V and her crew went to code orange. A departure for the record is likely in the next 48 to 72 hours.
Pascal Bidégorry: “it is possible that we have an opportunity to leave Friday in the day, but the situation is quite unstable.” This is several days that we look carefully at this possible window, but it does not move much, we monitor so very closely and we will see much if things are moving in our favour. There are other opportunities next week, we are therefore very vigilant. What is most likely it is that things indicate that at the last moment. ”
Marcel van Triest, router of Banque Populaire V Max returns him also to this code change and weather window that profile: “today we decided to switch to code orange because there are certainly a weather window, but that we are not safe to enter both uncertain is.” If it evolves, it might be a good opportunity to try this Jules Verne trophy record. What may be complicated with weather analysis, is that this is only a matter of probability and visibilities are sometimes very limited. Today, I am more visibility into the South Atlantic in a week than on Brest on Friday. Thus we expect to see if this is accurate. “We shall, I hope a better idea by tonight or tomorrow.”
The team which has been held on standby, are carefully assessing all opportunities.
The names of the winners of the 2009 Ocean Records World Championship are now known. In the crewed category, Pascal Bidégorry is the new champion thanks to his great achievement this summer with the crew of the Banque Populaire V trimaran in the Atlantic. In the single-handed category, after Francis Joyon in 2008, it is now Thomas Coville, who deservedly takes this award after completing a round the world voyage in 59 days.
The Ocean Records World Championship, which brings together all the major historic sailing records – over twenty routes in all – has delivered its verdict for 2009. In the final rankings based on each record being given a coefficient of one to ten according to its length and difficulty, the big winners in 2009 are Pascal Bidégorry in the crewed category and Thomas Coville for the single-handed sailors.
The North Atlantic and 24 hour record smashed
Pascal Bidégorry and his men have won the title of world champions thanks to the records set by the maxi-trimaran Banque Populaire V in the Atlantic. To remind you of their incredible feat, they crossed the ocean averaging 32.94 knots with a time of 3 days, 15 hours, 25 minutes and 48 seconds… They also smashed the 24-hour record and in so doing went through two symbolic barriers: the 800-mile and then the 900-mile barrier … In fact the giant trimaran Banque Populaire V sailed 908 miles in just one day.
Looking at the solo sailors, after Francis Joyon in 2008 and his 57-day round the world record, it is Thomas Coville, who takes the title of 2009 World Champion, thanks to his non-stop single-handed round the world voyage completed in a time of 59 days, 20 hours, 47 minutes and 43 seconds, the second best time ever. Thomas Coville did not manage to better Francis Joyon’s record, but achieved a remarkable performance, for which he has quite naturally been rewarded with this title of 2009 World Champion. We can note that this is the second time Thomas Coville has won this title as he was already proclaimed world champion for the first time back in 2006.
The reactions of the champions:
“Receiving this title of World Champion during the first year of sailing this boat is obviously a great pleasure. It is an honour for all those, who sail on the maxi Banque Populaire V… and I hope it won’t be the last! I hope too that there will be more and more of us battling it out in this championship in the coming years. It’s great that such rankings exist. We’ll see about next year, but if we get it thanks to the Jules Verne Trophy, I won’t be complaining!”
“Even if I always put this sort of honour into perspective – my real goal is to make another attempt at the single-handed round the world record next year- it’s really nice to be recognised in this way. The points system means that attempts are honoured. When a pole-vaulter jumps, we always expect him to beat Bubka’s world record and he tends to be forgotten if he doesn’t do that, even if he achieves the best performance of the year… »
Reminder of the winners since the Ocean Records World Championship was set up:
2008 : Lionel Lemonchois
2007 : Franck Cammas
2006 : Bruno Peyron
2005 : Bruno Peyron
2004 : Steve Fossett
2008 : Francis Joyon
2007 : Francis Joyon
2006 : Thomas Coville
2005 : Ellen MacArthur
2004 : Francis Joyon
Today, at the Race HQ for the Jules Verne Trophy in Paris, Frédérique Granado, Director of external communications at Groupama and Franck Cammas, skipper of the maxi trimaran, presented the crew who will be setting off on their latest adventure from 1st November onwards. Their mission is to break the round the world record under sail, held since 2005 by Bruno Peyron on Orange 2 with a time of 50 days and 16 hours…
Tanned, cheerful and smiling broadly, the crew aboard Groupama 3 are keen to get going and rediscover the three oceans for which they have been actively preparing for several years. Back from a 7-day preparation session in the Mont Blanc massif under Eric Loizeau, Franck Cammas’ crew made a stopover at the Groupama Press HQ, 21 Bld Malesherbes in Paris’ 8th district, in order to present their challenge to the press.
This challenge crowns a twelve year partnership with Groupama since it was back in 1997 that the first sailing contract with Franck Cammas was signed:
“We have assessed the benefits of sailing sponsorship for the Group. Today, the French brand Groupama is one of the most ingrained on people’s minds within the sailing universe and its image has made huge steps in terms of daring, opening and modernity. The human adventure and forward thinking of this project has also increased the cohesion of our 38,500 employees and our 70,000 representatives” explains Frédérique Granado. “Competitive sailing is the perfect illustration of the tenacity, the taste for action, controlled risk and the sense of innovation that form part of Groupama’s identity. Now, sailing plays an important role in the influence of the brand in France as well as overseas, as we were able to witness during this year’s Route of the Subsidiaries”.
A familiar face in its Paris premises, the skipper of Groupama 3 presented his crew one by one. Among its ranks are a whole score of champions of international renown, such as Stan Honey, Stève Ravussin, Lionel Lemonchois as well as Thomas Coville: “I put my crew together by naturally favouring competence, as well as performance and motivation. These three qualities are dependent upon the ability to live together for around fifty days in a small space and in a fairly hostile universe. Initially this is what the success of our attempt revolves around” analyses Franck Cammas.
“In relation to our previous attempts, four new crew members have joined us. Stan Honey is replacing Yves Parlier in the navigation, Bruno Jeanjean is replacing Yann Dekker who’s aboard Alinghi, as is the case for Franck Proffit who’s replaced by Lionel Lemonchois and Sébastien Audigane by Thomas Coville. On paper and above all onboard during training, it’s the dream team. The remaining six crew, which might be described as the elders, have been aboard Groupama 3 since her launch in 2006: Stève Ravussin, Fred Le Peutrec, Loïc Le Mignon, Ronan Le Goff and Jacques Caraës”.
With an average of two victorious circumnavigations of the globe per crewman, with the exception of Cammas, Ravussin and Jeanjean, Groupama 3′s crew may be described as experienced. If we add to the mix the fact that three of them are already Jules Verne Trophy holders, that three of them have also won the Route du Rhum, one the Volvo Ocean Race and that together they broke the Trans-Mediterranean record this year, it can safely be said that performance goes hand in hand with their experience and competence.
There are now just two elements remaining to be victorious in their quest for the Holy Grail: to benefit from favourable weather conditions before setting off from Ushant and rounding the three capes, as well as to conserve Groupama 3 to ensure she makes it to the finish after sailing over 40,000 kilometres at high speed in what are often difficult seas, at times bordering on zones of ice, far away from any inhabited land: “In relation to our first round the world attempt, we’ve made a great deal of progress. This has been achieved by significantly reinforcing Groupama 3′s floats as well as covering a vast number of miles with two aims: to test the structure so as to gain confidence and get to know the boat better so as to go faster” continues Franck Cammas.
With ten days until the start of the stand-by period set for 1st November, the skipper of Groupama 3 can count on Sylvain Mondon, an expert router at Météo France, to analyse the forecasts on a daily basis and detect a good window sufficiently early to enable the crew to get to the boat: “To set off in good conditions, we’ll need 20 to 25 knots of NE’ly breeze, which will enable us to reach the equator in five to six days. Unfortunately we cannot anticipate how things are going to pan out after that, particularly as regards the position of the Saint Helena High. However, it’s the same scenario for all the challengers”.
Thanks to the colour code system put in place (red, orange, yellow and green), the crew don’t have to wait in Lorient or Brest for the fateful hour. Based in the United States, Brazil, Switzerland and France, the crew are given at least 72 hours’ warning before a probable departure. They have to be onboard 24 hours before the boat leaves the quayside on her way to the start line off Ushant.
Such organisation plays on Franck Cammas’ mind: “Experience has taught me that stand-by periods are tricky to handle as you can’t make any plans or organise anything for longer than three days. Analysing the weather forecasts is a good thing, but we prefer action. As such, if a good window presents itself early on, all ten of us will be very happy to set off on this extraordinary adventure that is a circumnavigation of the globe under sail. We have an exceptional boat in Groupama 3. It’s up to us to get the best out of her to beat the record set by Orange 2 and Bruno Peyron four years ago”.
The crew and organisation aboard Groupama 3:
• Watch No.1: Franck Cammas / Loïc Le Mignon / Jacques Caraës
• Watch No.2: Stève Ravussin / Thomas Coville / Bruno Jeanjean
• Watch No.3: Fred Le Peutrec / Lionel Lemonchois / Ronan Le Goff
• Off-watch navigator: Stan Honey goes up on deck for manoeuvres
• Each watch lasts three hours
• One watch on deck, one watch on stand-by ready to perform manoeuvres, one watch totally resting
The record to beat has been held since 2005 by Bruno Peyron on Orange 2 in 50 days 16 hours 20 minutes at an average speed of 17.89 knots. Lionel Lemonchois, Ronan Le Goff and Jacques Caraës were aboard.