Gabart has a few more sunrises to experience alone at sea.
Francois Gabart on Macif discusses the highs and lows of his epic Vendée Globe journey as he fights to keep his lead ahead of Armel Le Cléac’h on Banque Populaire.
It is hard to know just how much Francois Gabart (Macif) thinks about the possibility that he could be the youngest sailor in history to win the fabled Vendée Globe race in just a few days at the age of 29. When I spoke with him by phone as he approached the doldrums in the Atlantic, he seem more concerned about maintaining his lead of a hundred miles or so ahead of the more experienced and very, very capable Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) than the not-so-lofty chance that he could be the victor.
Michel Desjoyeaux before the start of the Krys Ocean Race.
Offshore sailing legend Michel Desjoyeaux hopes an American team will soon take part in the MOD70 circuit.
The rocky coastline of Brittany, France, is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. But this time of year, in late fall, when it is very wet, the weather can cast a pale of dark over anyone’s soul.
The wreck of Groupe Bel after a fishing boat slammed into it Monday morning.
Two skippers are forced to abandon their dreams of winning the Vendée Globe less than 48 hours after the start. Bruce Gain reflects on the drama of the race and the emotional cord it strikes with the French public.
The Vendée Globe got off to a rough start as two of the favorites were forced to abandon the race less than 48 hours after the start. And yet, the drama is just beginning.
Jean Pierre Dick, often touted a favorite to win the race, will sail the Virbac Paprec, one of the newer boats in the fleet.
Bruce Gain checks in with the Vendée Globe skippers to see how they're sizing up their competition for the solo, around-the-world race.
I would not describe it as NBA-style trash talking, but some past and present Vendée Globe sailors have very opinionated ideas about who will most likely win the Everest of offshore solo races. Most agree on the obvious conclusion that one of the more experienced sailors with a technologically advanced boat (and who is also very lucky) will be the first to arrive back to port at Les Sables d'Olonne after surviving the Vendée Globe’s around-the-world route. The general assumption is also that only about half of the fleet will even finish the race.
The Safran team has had more than eight years under its belt to ready what it says is one of the more technologically advanced boats in the fleet.
Bruce Gain goes for a spin on Marc Guillemot’s IMOCA-class Safran and gets the scoop on Guillemot's hopes for the Vendée Globe, which starts this November.
Sailing on Marc Guillemot’s IMOCA-class Safran was exceptionally calm the other day in the bay near Trinitié-sur-Mer along the Brittany coast of France. With a 10-knot warm wind over water that was as still as a lake, it was easy to forget the harsh conditions Guillemot will face when he sails around the world alone in the Vendée Globe race.
The Etoile Polaire weathered tough conditions with youngsters on board en route to Lisbon, Portugal.
A micro and macro account of this year’s Tall Ships Races shows what lessons beginner sailors can take away from the world’s largest offshore event of its kind.
As anyone who sails knows, almost anything can happen on the water, especially during long-distance stretches of 500 miles or more. The stakes are especially high for the skipper when they are responsible for the well being of an inexperienced crew. These two risks were compounded by the sheer number of participants during Sail Training International’s annual Tall Ships Races that took place in July and August.
The Pro-Am events of the Volvo Ocean Race are meant to be a fun way for passengers to try sailing a Volvo Open 70. Blogger Bruce Gain learns that for PUMA skipper Ken Read, racing is racing.
We were beating up in a nice 20-plus knot wind off the coast of Lorient, France, this weekend when Ken Read, PUMA Ocean Racing’s skipper, asked me if I’d like to steer. I thought, Did he really just ask that? In my head, I responded “hell yeah, I want to steer this thing, what kind of question is that?” But out loud, I accepted the invite as politely and calmly as I could.
Groupama’s Franck Cammas hasn't declared victory in the 2011-'12 Volvo Ocean Race just yet.
Groupama is the likely favorite to win the Volvo Ocean Race in early July with a current 23-point lead over second-place PUMA--but Franck Cammas is hardly ready to declare victory just yet. The French skipper says many things could still go wrong before he and Groupama become the second French skipper and team, respectively, to take the trophy since the first around-the-world race (the Whitbread Round the World Yacht Race) began in 1974.
For Alessandro di Benedetto, who spent nearly 270 days sailing non-stop around the world in a 21-foot boat, the cabin of the Open 60 monohull he'll use for the 2012-'13 Vendée Globe will seem quite spacious.
Many say Alessandro di Benedetto already scaled sailing's toughest peak when he took a 21-foot boat around the world, non-stop, in 269 days. But just to be sure, he's planning to sail in the 2012-'13 Vendée Globe.
Alessandro di Benedetto has never raced in a major regatta. Yet, he is on the short list of competitors scheduled to take part in the Mount Everest of sailing competitions, the 2012-’13 Vendée Globe, the only singlehanded, non-stop, around-the-world race.
After two events with Yann Guichard driving the Energy Team AC45, team co-founder Loïck Peyron will return to the helm for the Venice and Newport, R.I., stops on the America's Cup World Series tour. Peyron says that going forward, even onboard the teams AC72, he and Guichard will share the helming responsibilities.
After a few events away, Loïck Peyron steps back onto the helm of the Energy Team AC45. However, the team's primary focus is on securing the necessary sponsorship to build an AC72.
Loïck Peyron and his brother Bruno, the key cogs in France's Energy Team, have just weeks left to secure the sponsorship they need to compete in the America’s Cup and are looking at some formidable in-shore competition in the America’s Cup World Series circuit in the meantime. But regardless of what happens, Loïck Peyron says he is very pleased with how the America’s Cup culture has changed for the better.