Ten months before the start of the Vendée Globe and a very intense build up season which will open with The Transat CIC (starts May 10) and rolls straight into the New York-Vendée (June 16), almost all of the IMOCAs are fully engaged in their winter refits. For some the job list is more comprehensive and may include new foils, for others constrained by budgets it is more about maximising reliability and small incremental performance gains.
24th on the Transat Jacques Vabre – her first big IMOCA transatlantic – Pip Hare, back to her home base in Poole, England, had just lifted her famous evergreen 20 year old IMOCA Superbigou out of the water ready for a refit to be ready for the 2020 season and the Vendée Globe. Hare, 45, a former Mini sailor, is on one of the tightest budgets of the fleet but says if she does not have the money she won’t do the race…
Sam Manuard is no stranger to success in Class 40 with his Mach series of designs and in the Mini class in which he cut his teeth as a designer and sailor. Recently he has been pushing the design envelope with his rounded chunky bowed Class 40 Banque du Leman which debuted with fourth in the Transat Jacques Vabre just weeks after it was launched. Manuard was chosen by his long time Mini class adversary Armel Tripon to design L’Occitane. Seeking a more radical, clean sheet of paper approach the Multi 50 winner of the last Route du Rhum seems to have just that, according to the images released November 25th.
After losing his mast when he was in 10th place and some 750 miles from the finish line of the Vendée Globe Conrad Colman’s epic 14 day struggle to complete his race highlights his remarkable grit and determination and remains one of the outstanding stories in the recent history of the race. The Brittany based native of New Zealand, 36 next month, confirmed recently that he will take part in the next race after having agreed a charter of the 2004 Marc Lombard design Vivo A Beira which started life as Roland Jourdain’s Sill 2/Veolia and which Sam Davies raced as Saveol. Work starts almost immediately on the boat while Colman confirms he is still looking for a title co-sponsor to complete the budget he wants. Tip & Shaft caught up with Colman.
The Transat Jacques Vabre was a resounding success for the Finistère ocean racing training centre, as all three IMOCAs on the podium were skippered by sailors who train in Port-la-Forêt. This was a pleasing outcome for the director, Christian Le Pape, who examines what is happening in the world of ocean racing and at the Centre for Tip & Shaft.
On Sunday November 1st, the SAEM Vendée, the organisers of the Vendée Globe published the official list of the 37 candidates for the next edition of the famous non stop solo race around the which starts in one year’s time today, Friday. Tip & Shaft provides an update on the 37 candidates and any potential decisions the organisers will have to make on July 1, 2020, the final registration deadline.
Last Sunday the SAEM Vendée, the organisers of the Vendée Globe published the official list of the 37 candidates for the next edition of the famous non stop solo race around the which starts in one year’s time today, Friday. The list revealed one big surprise, Yann Eliès will sail on a new boat.
Charlie Dalin is docked this week in his original home port, Le Havre, with the dream ticket, a new Verdier designed IMOCA Apivia ready to race their first big transoceanic race. Dalin was graduated from Southampton with a degree in naval architecture in 2006 and from 2015 he has been in the Skipper Macif programme until early in 2018 Apivia, a new Macif brand, announced their support for Dalin on a four year Vendée Globe programme. After finishing third on the 2015 Transat Jacques Vabre as co-skipper to Yann Eliès, Dalin pairs up again with Eliès for the upcoming Transat Jacques Vabre. Tip & Shaft spoke to Charlie……
With a professional career which now stretches to nearly 15 years Christopher Pratt has known the highs and the lows. But Pratt, whose mother is from London, now feels life is on the ‘up’. He has worked with long time friend Jérémie Beyou on the IMOCA Charal since the first testing and training now with successive wins in the Défi Azimut and the Rolex Fastnet Race, Pratt is one half of a partnership which is considered favourites to win the upcoming Transat Jacques Vabre. Tip & Shaft caught up with him.
Yves Auvinet who is the president of SAEM Vendée which organizes the Vendée Globe, announced last Wednesday that the list of skippers who can register for the next edition of the famous solo round the world race is to increase to 34 skippers (30 and 4 wild cards). Tip & Shaft tells you how this decision was made.