Saturday 20 April 2013

Pornichet Select 6.50 : Briefing on the Course

J - 1 : On vous brief sur le parcours par overlapprod
Pornichet Select 6.50

America's Cup : Story of the Day - Video from ACWS Naples Day 2

America's Cup

America's Cup : Red Bull Sailing - HS Racing Improves in Naples

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

by Lisa Ramsperger

Newcomers HS Racing shrugged off a material disadvantage to improve on the second day of the America’s Cup World Series 2013 off the coast of Naples, Italy, finishing sixth and eighth on the day’s races.

Roman Hagara’s team kept pace with the top teams at the start and rounded the buoy in top position both times. But they ran out of speed in the downwind leg, struggling with their year-old gennaker. HS partner team ORACLE TEAM USA Slingsby are ahead after two days, with Energy Team (FRA) in second place.

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

“We are very satisfied with the second day. We had very good starts and outstanding communication on the boat,” said skipper Roman Hagara. “Even our maneuvres were superior. We felt really good out there.” But a material disadvantage cost them considerable speed and spoiled a potential surprise.

“Our gennaker is a year old,” said tactician Hans-Peter Steinacher. “We never expected the loss of speed would be that big. Even if we round the buoy ahead of Emirates Team NZL and Ben Ainslie Racing, we still have a speed disadvantage on the long course. The wardrobe just doesn’t fit.”

In their match race quarter-final HS Racing had to settle for a place behind ORACLE TEAM USA. “We worked our way back despite a penalty at the start but in the downwind leg we just lacked speed. It was still huge fun,” Hagara said.

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

With two more days of racing left, ORACLE TEAM USA Slingsby leads the standings, ahead of Energy Team and Emirates Team New Zealand. Local favorites and America´s Cup Challenger Luna Rossa and Artemis Racing are fifth and seventh.

Saturday will see the match race semi-finals and two more fleet races with local start time at 1405. All races are live on

America's Cup

America's Cup : ACWS Naples Day 2 images from Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Image copyright LUNA ROSSA/Carlo Borlenghi

Luna Rossa Challenge 2013
America's Cup

America's Cup : ORACLE TEAM USA Advances to Match Race Semis; Posts 1-2 in Fleet Racing

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

by Lisa Ramsperger

A win in the match race quarterfinals, followed by first and second-place results in fleet racing, completed a successful day of racing for ORACLE TEAM USA at the America’s Cup World Series in Naples, Italy, on Friday. The crew moves into the lead in the regatta fleet race standings with 38 points and will face JP Morgan BAR in the match race semifinals on Saturday.

“We had two good fleet races and got through to the next round of match racing – sort of an ideal day for us,” said helmsman Tom Slingsby. “I’ve got an excellent crew. We’re gelling really well, confidence is good, everyone’s getting along, and it shows.”

ORACLE TEAM USA sailed a clean race in their first match of the regatta. HS Racing was penalized during the pre-start, opening up the opportunity for Slingsby to lead on the first leg. The crew never relinquished the lead and crossed the line 34 seconds ahead of HS Racing.

Winds were blowing 10 knots at the start of fleet racing on the Bay of Naples. Slingsby rounded the first four gates in second and gradually gained ground to move into the lead down the fifth leg. After rounding Gate 5 in first, ORACLE TEAM USA again held consistent to win the third fleet race of the regatta. The crew finished 19 seconds in front of Energy Team.

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

The nine-boat fleet was back on the line for the second fleet race of the day. ORACLE TEAM USA crossed the start clean after nearly half of the fleet was penalized for an early jump. Energy Team was around Gate 1 first followed by Slingsby, and the two positions remained the same across the finish. ORACLE TEAM USA finished 27 seconds behind the French crew in second.

“I wanted to keep it pretty clean,” said Slingsby of the match race. “We had a good start, they took the penalty, and from there we were able to hold on and take the win.

“We were very fortunate on each fleet race start because the boat below us was over the line, allowing us a bit more room and a bit more speed. We had two good first legs and two good results,” Slingsby continued.

Following ORACLE TEAM USA in the fleet race standings are Energy Team (36 points) and Emirates Team New Zealand (36). Both match races on Saturday will feature teammates competing. The JP Morgan BAR crew is part of the ORACLE TEAM USA roster for the 34th America’s Cup, and Luna Rossa Piranha will face Luna Rossa Swordfish in the second semifinal.

“The team is starting to tie together really well. We had a few communication issues on the first day and that’s all getting ironed out. I think we’re going to keep improving as well,” said trimmer Kinley Fowler. “We’ve got a pretty tough match race against BAR, which will be good. We’ve done a fair bit of match race training with them recently.”

Image copyright ORACLE TEAM USA/ Olaf Pignataro

Racing begins on Friday at 14:05 local CET / 5:05 PT for ORACLE TEAM USA with match race semifinal No. 1. The entire nine-boat fleet will then be on the line for the fifth and sixth fleet races of the regatta.
Racing will be streamed live on YouTube worldwide (subject to territorial rights agreements) beginning at 14:00 local time (CEST) each day.

The nine boat fleet: Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg), China Team (Mitch Booth), Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker), Energy Team (Yann Guichard), HS Racing (Roman Hagara), J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie), Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper), Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni), and ORACLE TEAM USA SLINGSBY (Tom Slingsby)

Tom Slingsby (helmsman), Sam Newton (wing trimmer), Kinley Fowler (jib trimmer), Rome Kirby (runner), Piet van Nieuwenhuijzen (bowman)

Team (Country): R1, R2, R3, R4, R5, R6, R7 – Total
ORACLE TEAM USA SLINGSBY (USA): 2(10), 6(6), 1(12), 2(10) - 38
Energy Team (FRA): 7(5), 3(9), 2(10), 1(12) - 36
Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL): 1(12), 4(8), 5(7), 3(9) - 36
J.P. Morgan BAR (GBR): 3(9), 1(12), 6(6), 4(8) - 35
Luna Rossa Piranha (ITA): 4(8), 2(10), 4(8), 5(7) - 33
Luna Rossa Swordfish (ITA): 5(7), 5(7), 3(9), DNF(0) - 23
Artemis Racing White (SWE): 6(6), 7(5), 7(5), 7(5) - 21
HS Racing (USA): 8(4), 9(3), 8(4), 6(6) - 17
China Team (CHN): 9(3), 8(4), 9(3), 8(4) - 14
(Scoring: 1st place = 12 points, 2nd = 10, 3rd = 9, 4th = 8, 5th = 7, 6th = 6, 7th = 5, 8th = 4, 9th = 3)

Luna Rossa Piranha d. Emirates Team New Zealand

America's Cup

America's Cup : Day 2 was tough for Artemis Racing

Image copyright ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

by Artemis Racing media

A tough day for Artemis Racing on day two in Naples. Fleet race three and four took place after two match races; Emirates Team New Zealand defeated Francesco Bruni onboard Luna Rossa Swordfish and ORACLE Team USA- Slingsby won over HS Racing.

Young Swedish helmsman, Charlie Ekberg, had a tough time getting to the starting line on time in race one and was one of four teams over early in the start of the second fleet race. After the starts it was all about making up lost ground. With a short sprint to the first leeward gates it’s not easy. The team managed to get 6th and 7th place in the two fleet races.

There is only experience to be gained with this new team and for Ekberg, every moment on the water is experience that can be transferred to his Swedish Youth Challenge team after this week as they prepare for the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in September.

Image copyright ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

The Artemis Racing shore team will have a longer night than usual today with a near capsize in race two and an accidental collision with HS Racing during a mark rounding.

Sebastian Tenghage, Swedish shore team member and reserve sailor for Artemis Racing White, explains his long night ahead. “ Unfortunately we had to lift out the boat and start doing some repairs on the bow and other bits and pieces that have broken during racing. It shouldn’t be an all-nighter and we will be ready for racing tomorrow.”

Tomorrow’s match racing semi finals will be ORACLE Team USA- Slingsby vs. J.P. Morgan BAR and the Luna Rossa Teams going head to head against their Italian teammates. 

Click here for full racing schedule.

Artemis Racing
America's Cup

Vendée Globe : IMOCA Chooses its Future Boat and Sailing Programme

Groupe Bel. Image copyright Gilles Martin-Raget/Groupe Bel

by Aline Bourgeois

The Skippers and Members of IMOCA met in Paris on Thursday 18 and Friday 19 April 2013 at the IMOCA Annual General Meeting to decide the future direction of their class, and in particular to discuss two major subjects: the design of the future boat and the programme for the years to come.

The technical committee of the class has been working for two years reviewing the different possible architectural designs of the new boat, to comply with several constraints: to reduce the costs, to increase reliability and to allow the boats to stay competitive. The majority decision reached was an integrated solution, with a one-design mast and keel. The other elements of the boat must conform to the rules of stability, speed, length and construction materials. The boats will remain at 60 feet in length, with a bowsprit of 1.8 metres and the one-design keel must meet the specifications that were previously agreed, with particular note to the rule applying to a single piece of forged steel (Inox) for the keel blade.

Neutrogena. Image copyright Boris Herrmann/Neutrogena

This new rule comes into immediate effect for all new boats while the current boats can continue to sail under the 2012 rules, or can decide to comply to the new regulations.

International Programme

The team at OSM (Open Sports Management), responsible for the development and commercialisation of the international class, presented the Race Programme for 2013/2014 announcing plans to take the boats to the United States and Asia. To this end, the IMOCA World Championship will change its format, organised around two Series. One Series will be solo, the culmination of which will be the Vendée Globe and another will be two-handed, finishing with the Barcelona World Race.

A New Board

Alex Thomson and Bernard Stamm finished their terms on the Board, but were re-elected. Dominique Wavre returns to the post of Administrator after a two year break, and Marc Guillemot's appointment as Director completes the new Board of IMOCA. Jean Le Cam, Armel Le Cléac'h, and Vincent Riou also retain their Directorship; Luc Talbourdet continues to be President of the Class.

Luc Talbourdet, President of IMOCA commented, "We've achieved our objectives: we have increased the safety of the boats, have implemented clear rules for the years to come and can now start production on the new boats."

Sir Keith Mills, President of OSM said, "I am really happy about the quality of discussions which we have had over the past two days. We now have the means to develop this class and give it the visibility and resources it deserves."

2013 Programme
August: Fastnet Race
November: Transat Jacques Vabre, from Le Havre (France) to Itajai (Brazil)

2014 Race Programme
Spring: Double-handed Transat
Summer: a 1,000 miles long race
November: Route du Rhum
31 December: Barcelona World Race

Foncia. Image copyright Benoit Stichelbaut/Foncia

In French:

Les skippers et membres de l’IMOCA étaient réunis à Paris jeudi 18 et vendredi 19 avril en assemblée générale annuelle, afin de définir les orientations futures de leur classe autour de deux sujets majeurs : le format du futur bateau et le programme des années à venir.

Le comité technique de la classe travaille depuis deux ans sur les différentes hypothèses architecturales du futur bateau qui doit répondre à plusieurs contraintes : réduire les coûts, rendre les bateaux plus fiables tout en permettant aux bateaux actuels de rester compétitifs. Le choix qui a été adopté à la majorité absolue est une solution intégrant un mât et une quille standardisés. Les autres éléments du bateau devront respecter des règles qui encadrent la stabilité, la puissance, la largeur et les matériaux de construction. La longueur est conservée à 60 pieds avec un bout dehors à 1,8 mètre. La quille standardisée répondra au cahier des charges qui a été préalablement validé, et qui impose notamment un voile d’une seule pièce en acier forgé (Inox).

L’application de cette nouvelle règle est immédiate pour tous les nouveaux bateaux. Les bateaux actuels pourront continuer à naviguer en respectant la règle appliquée en 2012 ou pourront décider de passer à la nouvelle jauge.

Virbac Paprec 3, with Loick Peyron in the foreground. Image copyright Loick Peyron/Virbac Paprec Sailing Team

Programme international
L’équipe d’OSM (Open Sports Management), structure chargée de développer et commercialiser la classe à l’international a présenté le programme de courses 2013/2014 et les orientations futures qui emmèneront les bateaux vers les Etats-Unis et l’Asie. Enfin, le championnat du monde IMOCA change de format. Il sera organisé autour de deux séries de course. Une série en solitaire avec comme point d’orgue le Vendée Globe et une série en double avec comme point d’orgue la Barcelona World Race.

Nouveau bureau
Alex Thomson et Bernard Stamm, dont les mandats se terminaient, ont été réélus au bureau de l’IMOCA. Dominique Wavre retrouve un poste d’administrateur qu’il avait quitté il y a deux ans et Marc Guillemot complète le nouveau Conseil d’Administration de l’IMOCA. Jean Le Cam, Armel Le Cléac’h, Vincent Riou conservent leur poste d’administrateur et Luc Talbourdet celui de Président de la classe.

Ils ont dit :
Luc Talbourdet, Président de l’IMOCA
« Les objectifs ont été atteints. Nous avons augmenté la fiabilité des bateaux. Nous avons maintenant des règles claires pour les années à venir et lancer la construction de nouveaux bateaux. »

Sir Keith Mills, Président d’OSM
« Je suis très heureux de la qualité des échanges qui ont eu lieu durant ces deux jours. Nous avons maintenant les moyens de développer cette classe et de lui donner enfin la visibilité et les moyens qu’elle mérite. »

Bright future for the IMOCA class. Image copyright Maria Muina/Estrella Damm

Programme 2013 :
Août : Fastnet Race
Novembre : Transat Jacques Vabre, entre le Havre et Itajaí (Brésil)

Programme 2014 :
Printemps : une transat en double
Eté : une course de 1000 milles
Novembre : Route du Rhum
31 décembre : Barcelona World Race

Pornichet Select 6.50 : A Quick Run past all the Minis on video

Pornichet Select 6.50

America's Cup : HS Racing Team to match race ORACLE TEAM USA in Quarter-finals

Image copyright ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

by Lisa Ramsperger

HS Racing Team kicked off their America’s Cup World Series with a match race win over Team China on Thursday off the coast of Naples, Italy, to set up a mouth-watering Friday quarter-final against America’s Cup defender ORACLE TEAM USA. In the fleet races, however, it was not smooth sailing for the boat of Austria’s double Olympic champions with four penalties in two races.

“There is no better way to start a regatta“ said tactician Hans Peter Steinacher after their opening victory over Team China who had to give way to HS Racing after a rule violation. Hagara/Steinacher and their crew now meet partner team ORACLE TEAM USA in the last eight. “We face our mother ship. I doubt there will be a team order,” said Hagara, who rates his chances for a semi-final spot. „Nothing is impossible even if we go into the race as outsiders.”

In the fleet races it initially looked to be going the newcomers‘ way. In both races HS Racing rounded the first buoy in third position. “Basically I am satisfied, were it not for those penalties. We had a good start but those penalties were costly,” said Hagara.

Races get under way at 13:45 local on Friday with the quarter-final clashes and two more fleet races on the schedule.

Image copyright ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

Ben Ainslie (UK/BA Racing) is leading the standings after the first day, ahead of Emirates Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa (ITA). HS Racing is in eighth place, level on points with Team China.

The U.S.-flagged HS Racing is competing in Naples for the Golden Gate Yacht Club (San Francisco). This was made possible through a partnership with Oracle Team USA. HS Racing has been integrated into the Naples base of the America’s Cup defender.

The Austrians coached ORACLE TEAM USA skipper Jimmy Spithill (AUS) during his triumph at the 32nd America´s Cup. Hagara also steered in Valencia for the America´s Cup TV-Trials following an invitation from Russell Coutts (CEO OTUSA/NZL). Spithill, Coutts and Hagara/Steinacher are currently involved in the launching of the Red Bull Youth America´s Cup 2013, aimed at offering young sailors a direct path to the America’s Cup.

NB This team report is from Thursday, Day 1 of racing. Apologies for the late publication.

America's Cup

America's Cup : Steady Sailing, Jarring Collision, Mark Day 2 of ACWS Naples

© ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget

by America's Cup media

Strong performances by ORACLE TEAM USA SLINGSBY and Energy Team along with a jarring collision between Emirates Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa Challenge were the hallmarks of Day 2 at America’s Cup World Series Naples.

Helmsman Tom Slingsby led ORACLE TEAM USA into the top spot in the standings with finishes of 1-2 in today’s two fleet races. Slingsby, filling in for team skipper Jimmy Spithill, also won his first competitive match race, a 34-second victory over HS Racing led by co-skippers Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher.

“It was an ideal day for us, we’re really happy,” said Slingsby, the 28-year-old Australian who won the Gold medal in the Laser class at last year’s Olympic Regatta.

“The wind was a bit steadier today so you just had to worry about getting a good start, boathandling and positioning,” Slingsby continued. “You didn’t have to read into watching the wind and everything it did. It was a beautiful seabreeze with small shifts and made things a bit easier.”

© ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget

Slingsby’s performance impressed even the U.S. Ambassador to Italy, David Thorne, who was guest racer aboard ORACLE TEAM USA.

“Looking at the racing, it’s really spectacular,” said Thorne. “Being in it, doing it, it's so much fun to get engaged in something like this. These are not really sailboats, they're airplanes. It's a spectacular feeling of speed and movement. It's completely thrilling.”

Led by skipper Yann Guichard, France’s Energy Team posted a 2-1. They were overtaken by Slingsby on the second upwind leg in the first fleet race, but rebounded for a 26-second win in the second race.

“Yesterday was difficult to understand the race course, it was very shifty. Today the wind was very steady so I could really focus on the speed of the boat, especially on the start,” said Guichard, who led Energy Team to 4th place at last year’s AC World Series Naples.

“It will all come down to Sunday, but it's really important to do well day after day so we can be confident going into the last day,” Guichard said.

While the fleet races were tame in terms of boats banging off each other, the same cannot be said of the day’s first match race between Luna Rossa Swordfish and Emirates Team New Zealand.

The rival crews who spent the winter training on AC72s in New Zealand were involved in a collision at the windward mark that flattened the starboard bow of Luna Rossa Swordfish and damaged the port stern scoop of Emirates Team New Zealand.

Dean Barker got Emirates Team New Zealand off to a good start when he forced Francesco Bruni and Luna Rossa Swordfish over the start line early. Barker led by 5 seconds around the leeward mark but Bruni steadily chipped away at that lead upwind.

© ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget

As the two crews aimed to round the left side windward mark, Barker approached on starboard with Bruni on port. Video replays show that Bruni got to the three-boatlength circle a split second before Barker, which gave Bruni rights to round the mark free of interference from Barker.

Barker, however, continued sailing straight to the mark and Bruni crashed into him as he started to tack towards the mark. Barker was penalized on the ensuing run and Bruni won the match.

But the damage to the boats was done and later Luna Rossa Swordfish retired from the second fleet race due to the damage despite finishing 3rd in the first fleet race.

“We are happy with our win over Team New Zealand because they are one of the best teams on the water so to beat them is a nice thing to do,” said Luna Rossa Challenge skipper Max Sirena, a trimmer aboard Swordfish.

“In the second race we broke the headstay bracket on the bowsprit, it dragged back 10 centimeters. We think it’s because of the damage in the collision,” Sirena said.

Barker was upset that Luna Rossa Swordfish didn’t do more to avoid the collision.

“Normally, even if you're in the right you avoid collisions resulting in serious damage and it doesn't seem like they did a lot,” said Barker, a past match racing world champion. “I think it's pretty poor to be honest. But the umpires see it the way they see it and our guys have a long night to fix the boat.”

Both boats were hauled from the water for their shore teams to affect repairs.

Racing resumes tomorrow at 14:00 local time (CEST) and will be streamed live on YouTube worldwide (subject to territorial rights agreements).

Download the full race schedule and format here

America’s Cup World Series Naples Championship Standings
(Provisional, after 4 of 7 scheduled races)
1. ORACLE TEAM USA (Tom Slingsby) – 38 points
2. Energy Team (Yann Guichard) – 36
3. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) – 36
4. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) – 35
5. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) – 33
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) – 23
7. Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) – 21
8. HS Racing (R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher) – 17
9. China Team (Mitch Booth) – 14

Saturday’s Match Racing Schedule
Semifinal 1: Luna Rossa Piranha vs. Luna Rossa Swordfish
Semifinal 2: ORACLE TEAM USA SLINGSBY vs. J.P. Morgan BAR

America's Cup

America's Cup : A Tough Day at the Office for JP Morgan BAR

Image copyright Lloyd Images/JP Morgan BAR

by Lucy Harwood

It was a tough day on the water for Ben Ainslie’s J.P.Morgan BAR. Two bad starts for the crew saw them forced to play catch up, but some great crew work, boat handling and good tactical calls kept the team in contention on the overall leaderboard. They head into the penultimate day of racing in fourth place overall, just three points separate the top four teams and with the loaded points on the final race on Super Sunday there is everything still to play for.

The first start of the day saw J.P.Morgan BAR late for the line following a wrap in the wing sheet, skipper Ben Ainslie explained the issue after racing, “We had a problem with the wing sheet where it got wrapped around the winch handle and then we weren’t able to trim it on. It’s a bit like driving a car out of gear, pressing the accelerator when you’re not in gear and nothing happens, so obviously we couldn’t accelerate and we were last off the line.”

Image copyright Lloyd Images/JP Morgan BAR

The crew battled through the pack, picking the best shifts and trying to avoid the bad air as the boats jostled for space on the race course. At times the fleet was caught in a giant pile up at the gates as everyone fought for space. The team worked hard pulling back valuable places to finish sixth on the first race.

In race two J.PMorgan BAR was one of four teams who jumped the gun and were forced to take the time penalty. Strong crew work saw the team pull back to fourth at the finish, just behind Emirates Team New Zealand.

“It was a tough day at the office,” was Matt Mitchell’s synopsis of the day, “We were back in the ruck today and it was pretty scrappy on the race course. In that situation you don’t get to choose where you want to go, so it was a totally different world from yesterday. As a result it was a day of pain for the boys on the boat, but we battled back nicely in both races. We rolled our sleeves up and got back up to mid-fleet and managed to salvage a few points. It’s still super close for the top five places so we will come back tomorrow and work hard for some more consistent results.”
Image copyrifght Lloyd Images/JP Morgan BAR

Many teams had mixed fortunes today including damage to both Emirates Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa Swordfish after a port starboard incident in their match race. The other Italian teams, Luna Rossa’s Piranha, were forced to pull out of the final fleet race posting a DNF after discovering a fault on wing. Elsewhere ORACLE Team USA Slingby and the French Team Energy had a faultless day, both teams posted a first and second in the two fleet races.

J.P.Morgan BAR will line up against their training partners ORACLE Team USA in tomorrow’s match racing semi-finals. Ainslie is looking forwarded to the race against fellow Olympic gold-medallist Tom Slingsby. “The match racing semi-finals are going to be great, we have been training with ORACLE Team USA a little bit before this event so there will be plenty of bragging rights in house, so I’m looking forward to that. They had a fantastic day today so it should be a close race.”

Tough Day 2 for JP Morgan BAR - video

With three fleet races remaining, including the Super Sunday, just three points split the top four teams.

J.P.Morgan BAR crewmember Simon Daubney has competed in eight America’s Cups and won four, little surprise that he is considered as one of the most experienced sailors on the America’s Cup World Series circuit. His impressive background makes him perfectly placed to comment on the Cup and how big a task the next Cup cycle will be.

Ben Ainslie and Simon Daubney. Image copyright Lloyd Images/JP Morgan BAR

To read Simon Daubney’s blog click here

Day 2 Naples – Overall standings after four fleet races

2 ENERGY TEAM – 36 pts
4 J.P. MORGAN BAR – 35 pts
8 HS RACING– 17pts
9 CHINA TEAM – 14pts

JP Morgan BAR
America's Cup

America's Cup : Crashing Day 2 for Emirates Team New Zealand

Emirates Team New Zealand
America's Cup

America's Cup : Luna Rossa Piranha and Luna Rossa Swordfish both qualify for match race semi-finals

Just before the crash. Image © Luna Rossa/Carlo Borlenghi

by Luna Rossa media

Another beautiful day on the water in the Gulf of Naples: flat sea, 10-13 knots of slightly more stable South Westerly winds versus yesterday.

Match Race

During the pre-start Luna Rossa Swordfish is in a good position but is penalized for OCS (early over the line); this drawback allows Emirates Team New Zealand to take the lead.

At the downwind gate Emirates Team New Zealand chooses to sail offshore whereas Luna Rossa Swordfish separates and sails towards the land. This decision allows Luna Rossa Swordfish to move closer to Emirates Team New Zealand: at the windward mark Luna Rossa Swordfish gains the inside but Emirates Team New Zealand does not respond correctly and the collision is inevitable. Despite the damage to Luna Rossa Swordfish’s bow Francesco Bruni continues with the race and moves to the lead as Emirates Team New Zealand gets penalized.

Luna Rossa Swordfish qualifies for the semifinal where they will race against Luna Rossa Piranha.

Fleet Race 1

A good start for both Luna Rossa boats, with Luna Rossa Piranha on pin end and Luna Rossa Swordfish in the middle of the starting line. At the reaching mark Swordfish takes the lead of the fleet, whereas Luna Rossa Piranha is rolled and rounds the mark in the middle of the fleet. The positions remain unchanged up to the first windward mark where Luna Rossa Swordfish is still in the lead. Francesco Bruni will stay in this position also on the downwind leg, with Piranha following in 4th place. During the final beat a left wind shift favors both Oracle and Energy who choose to tack offshore. Luna Rossa Swordfish will round the mark and close the race in 3rd place, followed by Luna Rossa Piranha.

Fleet Race 2

At the start Luna Rossa Swordfish and Luna Rossa Piranha switch their positioning on the starting line with respect to the previous race: Luna Rossa Swordfish is on pin end and Luna Rossa Piranha in the middle. Luna Rossa Swordfish starts fast and with good timing, whereas Luna Rossa Piranha incurs in a penalty for OCS (early over the line). At the reaching gate Luna Rossa Swordfish tacks in 3rd place behind Oracle and Energy, whereas Luna Rossa Piranha is still in the pack. At the downwind gate Emirates Team New Zealand passes in front of Luna Rossa Swordfish but Francesco Bruni regains his previous position on the windward leg and rounds the mark in 3rd place, with Luna Rossa Piranha following in 5th.

On the downwind leg Luna Rossa Piranha closes the gap and moves into 4th place. On the second beat Luna Rossa Swordfish, just before reaching the mark, suffers a bowsprit and headstay failure (due to the previous collision) and is obliged to withdraw.

On the second downwind leg Luna Rossa Piranha loses one position on Ben Ainslie and finishes 5th .


1. Oracle Team USA Slingsby p. 38
2. Energy Team p. 36
3. Emirates Team New Zealand p. 36
4. J.P. Morgan BAR p. 35
5. Luna Rossa Piranha p. 33
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish p. 23
7. Artemis Racing White p. 21
8. HS Racing p. 17
9. China Team p. 14

Luna Rossa Challenge 2013
America's Cup

America's Cup : Energy Team's Big Day!

© ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

by Pierre Giboire

They finished second before winning in today’s two fleet races. With Yann Guichard at the helm, the French crew on Energy Team was almost perfect today for the second day of the AC World Series in Naples. A performance worthy of champions, which puts them back in the running in the overall rankings. Out of the four races so far run in Naples, Energy Team has made it to the podium on three occasions including one win. The result is that they have taken a giant leap forward in the overall rankings, going from fifth to second place. A truly great day.

Second in Fleet Race 3

In spite of getting a penalty, which they quickly executed in the pre-start phase, Energy Team with Yann Guichard at the helm was up with the frontrunners from the start. The French AC45 managed to round the first buoy in third position, just ahead of the Italians on Luna Rossa Swordfish, who were playing on their home ground and Oracle Team USA skippered by the talented young Australian, Tom Slingsby. The breeze blowing at around ten knots was a little more stable and the local effects less noticeable in the Bay of Naples today. Early this afternoon, the wind was still moderate, but the this third fleet in Naples race saw the boats racing at around 13 knots upwind and almost 20 knots downwind. On the first upwind leg, Energy Team warded off attacks from the other Italian AC45 and by the third mark, Yann Guichard was up there on the provisional podium. After just 11 minutes of racing, they had already reached the fourth mark and the three frontrunners remained in front: Franc esco Bruni led ahead of Tom Slingsby and Yann Guichard. Energy Team was still under threat from Luna Rossa Piranha and Emirates Team New Zealand, but the French sailed perfectly and managed to avoid committing any mistakes… quite the reverse. At the fifth mark, Yann Guichard won priority over Luna Rossa as in the sailing manuals and grabbed second place. On the final leg, Energy Team held on to this great second position right up to the finish, which they reached 19 seconds after the winner Oracle and 19 seconds ahead of Luna Rossa Swordfish. Yann Guichard’s crew had made it to the podium for the second time in a row after three races and move up a notch in the rankings. We should add that there was a rather disappointing performance from the two leaders in the overall rankings, Ben Ainslie and Dean Barker, who finished respectively sixth and fifth. But for the French, it was an excellent start to the day.

Fleet Race 4 won by Energy Team

The crew of Energy Team was on fire. A great start and in the first few magnificent legs they were leading the fleet of AC45s. With the wind freshening a little, Yann Guichard and his men sent the sparks flying and were way out in front at the first three marks. They made perfect use of the wind and built up their speed managing to get a lead of more than 200 metres between marks 3 and 4. Energy Team rounded the fourth buoy after 10 minutes of racing, some 19 seconds ahead of Oracle, 36 seconds ahead of Emirates Team New Zealand, 42 ahead of Luna Rossa Piranha and with a lead of more than one minute over Ben Ainslie (JP Morgan Bar). The next upwind leg was a little bit trickier with Dean Barker’s Kiwis and Tom Slingsby leading the American team initially managing to narrow the gap, but Yann Guichard proved once again that he knows how to manage such a lead and remain ahead. After 16 minutes of racing, Energy Team, rounded the fifth mark with a relatively comfortable lea d: 23 and 38 seconds, before setting off at high speed downwind sailing at almost 22 knots with a lead of 250 metres. They rounded the sixth mark in perfect style and Yann Guichard and his men sailed away to a magnificent victory. After 20 minutes, it was all over: a huge win for Energy Team, who showed themselves today to be on champion form, finishing second and then winning. This fantastic day in Naples gives them a real boost in the rankings. What a race!

© ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

Yann Guichard: "A magnificent day!"

"We got off to two great starts and then sailed well. This was a magnificent day for Energy Team! On these boats, you are always close to the edge, particularly in the start phase. We clearly saw that today in the second race, when four boats got penalized at the start. We’re really pleased, as rather frustrated with the match racing result yesterday against Ben Ainslie, when we lost out after getting off to a fantastic start. Today, after a long debriefing and some adjustments to the boat, we overcame that and everything went smoothly. I’m really pleased with the team… I hope that everyone and the French in particular enjoyed watching us sail like that today."

The Naples Fleet Race rankings after the second day:

1. Oracle Team USA (USA) / Tom Slingsby 38 pts (2nd/6th/1st/2nd)
2. Energy Team (FRA) / Yann Guichard 36 pts (7th/3rd/2nd/1st)
3. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL) / Dean Barker 36 pts (1st/4th/5th/3rd)
4. JP Morgan Bar (GBR) / Ben Ainslie 35 pts (3rd/1st/6th/4th)
5. Luna Rossa Piranha (ITA) / Chris Draper 33 pts (4th/2nd/4th/5th)
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (ITA) / Francesco Bruni 23 pts (5th/5th/3rd/DNF)
7. Artemis Racing (SWE) / Charlie Ekberg 21 pts (6th/7th/7th/7the)
8. HS Racing (USA) / Roman Hagara 17 pts (8th/9th/8th/6th)
9. China Team (CHN) / Mitch Booth 14 pts (9th/8th/9th/8th)

© ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

In French:

Deuxième et vainqueur des deux courses en flotte disputées aujourd'hui ! Avec Yann Guichard à la barre, les Frenchies d'Energy Team ont été quasi parfaits ce vendredi, pour la deuxième journée des AC World Series de Naples. Une performance de grands champions qui les relance totalement au classement général. Sur quatre manches courues jusqu'ici à Naples, Energy Team a conquis trois fois le podium dont une victoire. Résultat : ils font un pas de géant au classement général, passant de la cinquième à la deuxième place. C'est grand !

Fleet Race 3 : Energy Team deuxième !

Encore un bon départ pour Energy Team ! Yann Guichard joue dès l'entame aux avant-postes et l'AC 45 français parvient à passer la première bouée en troisième position, juste derrière Luna Rossa Swordfish, qui joue "à domicile", et Oracle Team USA skippé par le jeune et talentueux Australien Tom Slingsby. La brise de l'ordre de 10 noeuds est un peu moins instable mais les effets de site toujours marqués dans cette baie de Naples où rien n'est jamais acquis. En ce début d'après-midi, le vent est encore modéré mais c'est tout de même à des vitesses de l'ordre de 13 noeuds au près et presque 20 noeuds au portant que se joue cette troisième Fleet Race napolitaine. Sur le premier bord de près, Energy Team résiste aux attaques de l'autre AC45 italien et à la troisième marque, Yann Guichard tient bon ce podium provisoire ! Après seulement 11 minutes de course, on est déjà à la 4e marque et le trio de tête est inchangé : Francesco Bruni mène devant Tom Slingsby et Yann Guichard. Energy Team est sous la double menace de Luna Rossa Piranha et Emirates Team New Zealand sur le deuxième, mais les Français naviguent parfaitement, sans commettre aucune erreur… bien au contraire ! A la 5e marque, Yann Guichard "colle un tribord" comme dans les livres à Luna Rossa et s'empare de la deuxième place ! Dans le dernier bord, Energy Team ne lâchera pas cette splendide deuxième position qu'il tient jusqu'à la ligne, coupée 19 secondes après le vainqueur Oracle et 19 secondes devant Luna Rossa Swordfish. L'équipage de Yann Guichard enchaine un deuxième podium sur trois courses disputées et monte d'un cran dans la hiérarchie. A noter les relatives contre-performances des deux leaders au général, Ben Ainslie et Dean Barker, qui terminent 6e et 5e. Mais pour les Français, la journée commence parfaitement !

Fleet Race 4 : Victoire de Energy Team

L'équipage de Energy Team est survolté ! Super départ et magnifiques premiers bords en tête ! Alors que le vent est monté d'un cran, Yann Guichard et ses hommes font des étincelles et virent largement en tête aux trois premières marques. Ils parviennent à se forger une avance de plus de 200 mètres entre les marques 3 et 4 et enroulent la 4e bouée, au bout de 10 minutes de course, avec 19 secondes d'avance sur Oracle, 36 secondes sur Emirates Team New Zealand, 42 sur Luna Rossa Piranha et plus d'une minute sur Ben Ainslie (JP Morgan Bar) ! Le bord de près qui suit est un tout petit peu plus délicat, avec les Kiwis de Dean Barker et les Américains de Tom Slingsby qui reviennent fort dans un premier temps. Mais Yann Guichard prouve une fois de plus qu'il sait aussi contrôler parfaitement et gérer son avance. Energy Team, au bout de 16 minutes de course, vire la 5e marque avec un matelas relativement confortable : 23 et 38 secondes... avant de repartir à grande vitesse au portant : près de 22 noeuds et 250 mètres de marge. La marque 6 est enroulée impeccablement et Yann Guichard et ses hommes foncent vers une très large et magnifique victoire ! En vingt minutes, l'affaire est faite : grande victoire d'Energy Team qui enchaine aujourd'hui une performance de grand champion : 2e et vainqueur ! Cette superbe journée napolitaine va faire un bien fou au classement général. Quelle course !

© ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

Yann Guichard : "une journée magnifique !"

"Nous avons pris deux très bons départs et bien navigué ensuite, c'est une journée magnifique pour Energy Team ! Sur ces bateaux, nous sommes toujours à la limite, particulièrement sur la phase de départ. Nous l'avons bien vu sur la deuxième course aujourd'hui, où quatre bateaux sont pénalisés au départ. On est super content car nous étions un peu frustrés du résultat du match-racing hier contre Ben Ainslie, où nous avions perdu après avoir fait un super départ. Aujourd'hui, après un gros debriefing et des changements de réglages sur le bateau, nous nous sommes très bien repris et ça c'est super bien passé ! Je suis vraiment fier du team… j'espère que tout le monde et les Français en particulier ont pris du plaisir à nous regarder naviguer comme ça aujourd'hui."

Le classement des Fleet Races de Naples après la 2e journée :

1. Oracle Team USA (USA) / Tom Slingsby 38 pts (2e/6e/1er/2e)
2. Energy Team (FRA) / Yann Guichard 36 pts (7e/3e/2e/1er)
3. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL) / Dean Barker 36 pts (1er/4e/5e/3e)
4. JP Morgan Bar (GBR) / Ben Ainslie 35 pts (3e/1er/6e/4e)
5. Luna Rossa Piranha (ITA) / Chris Draper 33 pts (4e/2e/4e/5e)
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (ITA) / Francesco Bruni 23 pts (5e/5e/3e/DNF)
7. Artemis Racing (SWE) / Charlie Ekberg 21 pts (6e/7e/7e/7e)
8. HS Racing (USA) / Roman Hagara 17 pts (8e/9e/8e/6e)
9. China Team (CHN) / Mitch Booth 14 pts (9e/8e/9e/8e)

Energy Team
America's Cup

Pornichet Select 6.50 : The Day Before the Departure

J - 1 : La Select pour les mini, c'est quoi ? par overlapprod
Pornichet Select 6.50

ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres : Rentrée des classes à l'aube d'une nouvelle Olympiade

Camille Lecointre et Mathilde Géron. Image copyright FFVoile.

by Kaori media

Après un break hivernal, très différent pour l'une et pour l'autre, Camille Lecointre et Mathilde Géron reforment leur équipage en 470 pour les quatre prochaines années, jusqu'aux Jeux Olympiques de Rio de Janeiro en 2016. Dès dimanche, elles testeront leur niveau de performance parmi les équipages internationaux, sur le plan d'eau de la 45è semaine d'Hyères.

Découverte et détente pour l'une ....

Après un long voyage en Inde durant l'automne, Camille Lecointre reprenait les navigations ; pas en 470 cette fois mais en J80, M34, pour se faire plaisir tout en préservant l'esprit de compétition. Ne pas avoir de pression, découvrir de nouvelles sensations, rencontrer des régatiers aux problématiques différentes, Camille sera comblée.

... Découverte et engagement pour l'autre

Après quelques semaines à Nouméa et un court passage au Nautic de Paris, Mathilde Géron embarquait sur un bâtiment de la Marine Nationale. Officier de marine marchande, Mathilde souhaitait cumuler des heures d'expérience en haute mer. Fin janvier, elle embarque précipitamment sur l’Aviso " Lieutenant de Vaisseau le Henaff" . L'expérience durera trois mois. Trois mois de navigation, de découverte des missions de la Marine nationale, de rencontres et de partages d'expériences, trois mois enrichissants sans mettre le pied sur le sol français.

La longue route jusqu'à Rio

Comme elles l'avaient décidé dès le mois d'octobre, deux mois après les Jeux de Londres auxquels elles se sont placées 4è, Camille et Mathilde reforment leur duo de choc au sein de l'équipe de France. Chaque année, elles enchaîneront les régates du circuit international ponctuées par le Mondial. En 2013, elles débutent la saison par la semaine d'Hyères et poursuivront avec les Jeux méditerranéens en Turquie en juin. En août, le Championnat du Monde, qui se déroulera à la Rochelle, constituera le principal objectif de Camille et Mathilde. Et c'est toujours à la Rochelle qu'elle clôtureront la saison de compétitions avec la Semaine Olympique Française, en octobre.

Un petit air de déjà vu ...

Après avoir stoppé toute navigation sur le bateau des Jeux, les voici de nouveau sur le plan d'eau, l'une à la barre, l'autre au rappel ...Et, comme si elles avaient pu en douter un instant, tous les réflexes leur reviennent. Dès dimanche dernier, elles naviguaient seules pour reprendre leurs marques sans aucune pression. Puis elles ont vu arriver progressivement les équipages masculins français, les équipages féminins puis les équipages étrangers dont certains qu'elles avaient croisé sur le plan d'eau de Weymouth aux Jeux. Encadrées par leur entraîneur Gildas Philippe, Camille et Mathilde mettront à profit cette semaine dans le sud de la France, pour retrouver leurs sensations et s'évaluer par rapport à leur concurrence. Les épreuves débuteront dès dimanche.

Les mots de Camille et Mathilde

Camille Lecointre : " Nous avons navigué sur le plan d’eau de Hyères sans autres concurrents en tout début de semaine. Puis nous avons retrouvé les équipages français masculins et féminins 470 au fur et à mesure de la semaine. Nous avons repris tranquillement, pas de mauvaise surprise, nous nous souvenons de la façon de naviguer sur un 470 ! Nous avons certainement perdu un peu par rapport au premier jour des Jeux de Londres. Mais ce doit être vrai pour à peu près tout le monde. A Hyères, notre objectif est de nous préparer pour le Mondial qui aura lieu en août à la Rochelle. Ici nous allons retrouver assez peu de concurrentes des Jeux : l’équipage brésilien qui a fait 5è à Londres et n’a pas arrêté les entraînements depuis ; mais aussi un équipage britannique recomposé. Dimanche prochain, ce sera la grande surprise : comment sommes-nous placées par rapport aux autres équipages féminins ?!"

Mathilde Géron : " Après avoir passé trois mois sur un bateau de la Marine nationale, c’est la musculation qui laissait à désirer … Le premier jour d’entraînement, j’ai un peu souffert de la position au rappel mais pour le reste, je n’avais rien oublié, je connais le 470 à vie maintenant ! J’ai hâte d’être déjà à la première manche du premier jour de la compétition pour savoir comment nous nous situons par rapport à la concurrence."


4è Jeux Olympiques, Londres
Vice-Championnes du Monde
3è Semaine Olympique Française (SOF)
Sélectionnées aux Jeux Olympiques

6è Test Event
5è Championnat d'Europe
3è Sail for Gold Regatta (coupe du Monde)
1er Championnat nord américain
4è Rolex Cup Miami (coupe du Monde)
13è Championnat du Monde

2è Semaine Olympique Française (coupe du Monde)
4è Championnat d'Europe
3è Championnat nord Américain
5è Delta Lloyd Regatta (coupe du Monde)

3è Jeux Méditerranéens
5è Grand Prix de l'Armistice

ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres

Spi Ouest France - Intermarché : Video of Sodebo M34


Sodebo Voile : The Saga


Extreme Sailing Series : Chinese Sailors to make Extreme 40 debut in Act 3, Qingdao

China Team will take part in the Extreme Sailing Series in Qingdao. Image copyright Lloyd Images/Extreme Sailing Series

by Extreme Sailing Series media

The Chinese challenger for the America’s Cup World Series, China Team, is heading to the sprawling metropolis of Qingdao as the invitational home team at Act 3 of the Extreme Sailing Series™ global tour from the 2nd-5th May 2013. The team will compete against the seven established Series teams on their home waters at China’s Olympic ‘Sailing City’.

China Team competed in the 2012 Qingdao Act and this year return with an almost entirely new line-up, including four Chinese sailors, all fresh from competing at the America’s Cup World Series in Naples, Italy. Yingkit Cheng (mainsail trimmer), one of China’s top 49er sailors, is the only team member to return to the Extreme 40 fleet after debuting with China Team in 2012 and has since had the chance to fine-tune his multihull skills with the team’s AC45. Cheng commented: “I'm so excited to return to this exciting class and sail in my home country with such a strong fleet this year. For me, it is a wonderful opportunity to reunite with my sailing friends from all over the world and compete, and hopefully win some races, against them.” Some of China’s most talented and elite sailors, and regular China Team crew, Yiran Zhang (bowman) Xue Liu (headsail trimmer) and Zijin Wen (co-skipper/tactician) will be making their Extreme 40 debut as part of China Team's ongoing endeavor to raise the profile of yachting in China and develop their national talent. The increase in the number of Chinese sailors competing as regular crew members with China Team is a clear indication of the successes achieved so far.

China Team is led by skipper and helmsman Mitch Booth, co-creator of the Extreme 40 boat, who is in possession of an enviable CV including two Olympic medals (bronze in Barcelona, 1992 and silver in Atlanta, 1996), an impressive 11 World Championships titles, as well as America’s Cup and previous Extreme 40 experience as skipper of The Ocean Racing Club in 2010. The Aussie legend admits its will be a challenge coming back to the fleet after a three-year hiatus: “I’m really looking forward to returning to the Extreme Sailing Series in Qingdao. This class is obviously close to my heart. It is always tough coming into a fleet that has already got a few events under their belts but together with China Team, we are excited to compete in the team’s home nation.”

The invitational team concept, which at Act 1 was Team Duqm Oman and Act 2 Team Aberdeen Singapore (both helmed by Britain’s Robert Greenhalgh), provides a platform for home nation teams and local sailing talent to compete on home waters, and so far this year has been a huge success, most recently providing Singapore’s aspiring Olympic sailor Scott Glen Sydney the opportunity to skipper his local boat. Watch an interview with Sydney as he discusses the opportunity here. The full crew lists for Act 3, Qingdao and live streaming times will be confirmed by Thursday 25th April.

China Team Crew List
Position / Crew member / Nationality
Skipper & Helmsman- Mitch Booth (AUS)
Co-skipper & Tactician – Wen Ziji (CHN)
Mainsail Trimmer - Yingkit Cheng (CHN)
Headsail Trimmer- Liu Xue (CHN)
Bowman -  Zhang Yiran (CHN)

Extreme Sailing Series

Solo Arrimer : Video of Nicolas Lunven on Generali, who finished in fourth place

Solo Arrimer

Friday 19 April 2013

Tour de Belle-Ile : En Mode Solidaire

par Léa Launay

Le sixième Tour de Belle-Ile fera la part belle aux actions solidaires. Si les participants sont désormais habitués à accompagner l’opération Appel d’Air, renouvelée cette année avec 15 enfants attendus à la Trinité-sur-Mer du 3 au 5 mai, l’épreuve soutient cette année l’association BLOOM, qui œuvre pour la conservation des océans. En outre, dix bateaux sont inscrits sous le pavillon « La Mer en soliDaire » avec à bord des équipages mixtes composés de personnes handicapées et valides.

Une fête pour tous ! Avec plus de 500 bateaux attendus samedi 4 mai à 10h sur la ligne de départ, le sixième Tour de Belle-Ile fera une nouvelle fois le plein. Comme sur les éditions précédentes, la convivialité, véritable ADN de l’épreuve, ira de pair avec la solidarité qui se déclinera à travers plusieurs opérations. La première est désormais bien connue des habitués du Tour, puisque pour la quatrième édition consécutive, l’opération Appel d’Air permettra à des enfants hospitalisés de participer à la course et à ses à-côtés le temps d’un long week-end.

Ils seront cette année 15 enfants, âgés de 9 à 15 ans, venant des hôpitaux Necker et Marie-Curie de Paris, à découvrir les joies de la navigation, à travers une première initiation le vendredi 3 mai, puis surtout la course le samedi, à bord de six bateaux aux couleurs d’Appel d’Air. Marin au grand cœur, Arnaud Boissières, fidèle du Tour de Belle-Ile, leur fera visiter son monocoque Imoca Akena Vérandas, à bord duquel il a terminé en février huitième du dernier Vendée Globe.

Les 15 enfants d’Appel d’Air auront peut-être l’occasion de croiser en mer les dix bateaux battant pavillon « La Mer en soliDaire » qui accueilleront à leur bord une cinquantaine d’équipiers, dont 13 personnes handicapées. L’objectif de cette opération, lancée à l’initiative de l’association du même nom, est d’encourager les activités entre personnes handicapées et personnes valides et de contribuer à changer le regard sur le handicap. Parmi ces dix bateaux, l’un sera emmené par un équipage 100% féminin, un Class 40 skippé par la navigatrice Caroline Vieille, qui accueillera à bord Françoise et Adèle, deux équipières handicapées.

BLOOM et le Tour de Belle-Ile main dans la main

La solidarité se déclinera également sur cette sixième édition à travers une nouvelle opération encouragée par les organisateurs, puisque le Tour de Belle-Ile soutient l’association BLOOM (*) dont l’objectif est la préservation des océans. Créée fin 2004, cette association de loi 1901 à but non lucratif aura son espace dédié sous le chapiteau où elle pourra faire connaître ses actions et solutions aux participants mais aussi aux visiteurs. « Les gens qui font de la voile sont naturellement sensibles aux thématiques que nous abordons, c’est pourquoi nous sommes ravis d’être associés au Tour de Belle-Ile, explique Claire Nouvian, fondatrice et directrice de BLOOM. En même temps, nous constatons qu’en France, beaucoup de gens ne sont pas forcément au courant de la gravité de la crise des océans. Si on compare avec l’Angleterre, la France est vraiment en retard en ce qui concerne la conscience environnementale sur les problèmes marins. Par exemple, un chef cuisinier anglais (Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall) a lancé une pétition pour arrêter la surpêche qui a recueilli 800 000 signatures, ça laisse rêveur… »

L’association a donc pour objectif de sensibiliser à la préservation des océans via des actions ciblées pour enrayer la surpêche, encourager la pêche artisanale et protéger les grandes profondeurs des océans, mais également via la recherche et des actions pédagogiques à destination d’un jeune public. « Nous organisons chaque année un concours scolaire sur les océans profonds : nous demandons aux enfants de créer des bandes-dessinées, des films ou des chansons sur ce thème. Nous travaillons avec beaucoup d’établissements scolaires en France, du primaire au lycée, en collaboration avec d’autres associations et avec le soutien de personnalités du monde culturel comme Sylvain Tesson ou le dessinateur Jul.»

Pour Claire Nouvian, le Tour de Belle-Ile tombe à pic pour faire parler d’une urgence qui, si elle n’est pas prise en compte rapidement, peut se transformer en véritable bombe à retardement. « La surexploitation des océans n’est pas un problème suffisamment connu de l’opinion publique, or  sans elle, quels moyens avons-nous pour infléchir les décisions politiques ? Nous sommes à un moment charnière : va-t-on réussir à prendre en compte les signaux que nous envoient les océans et agir en fonction pour éviter le pire ? Est-on capable d’inventer la durabilité ? » Le Tour de Belle-Ile et BLOOM ont décidé d’agir…

(*) Pourquoi BLOOM ? « Le bloom est un phénomène de multiplication dans l’océan, ça peut être très bon signe si c’est une explosion de la vie, de plancton par exemple. En revanche, s’il y a un bloom de méduses, c’est le signe d’un dérèglement », explique Claire Nouvian.

Vicomte A, nouveau Fournisseur Officiel du Tour de Belle-Ile

A quelques jours du départ du Tour de Belle-Ile, Vicomte A devient Fournisseur Officiel de l'épreuve. La jeune marque, créée par Arnaud et Bertrand de Soultrait est devenue en quelques années une référence sur le marché mondial. Présent dans le Polo, le Golf, le Tennis et l'Automobile, Vicomte A était partenaire du dernier Vendée Globe. En 2013, Vicomte A équipera toute l'équipe d'organisation du Tour de Belle-Ile.

Le Tour de Belle-Ile, un événement de voile dans un site d'exception, ouvert à toutes et à tous 

6e édition : 4 mai 2013, à 10h
Parcours : 42 milles nautiques
Départ / Arrivée : baie de Quiberon

L'Hydroptère : Alain Thébault and the Hydroptere will conquer the Pacific

From left to right : Yves Parlier, Alain Thébault and Jean Le Cam. © HYDROPTÈRE / FRANCIS LEMANGE

by l'Hydroptère media

On Wednesday 17th April, in the Parisian workshop of the architect Jean Nouvel, Alain Thébault and his teammates Jean Le Cam and Yves Parlier announced the continuation of the ocean program for Hydroptere. In a few weeks, they will try to beat the record of the Transpacific crossing between Los Angeles and Honolulu.

Sitting side by side on an Air France flight, Alain Thébault and Jean Nouvel discovered that they had some similar ideas. Even if one of them is between the sea and the sky, and the other one on the earth, they have something important in common: the persistence and imagination in the creation of new concepts. It is in the large room of Jean Nouvel Design workshops that Alain Thébault and his crew members announced their imminent departure to California.

A year ago, Hydroptere was getting ready in the Mediterranean before being brought to California to try to beat the Transpacific record. As she arrived in Los Angeles too late to benefit from the favourable weather window of June and July, Hydroptere headed to San Francisco to continue her training and greet her fellows of the America's Cup. The French trimaran was the first to fly in the bay at over 45 knots. Make boats fly has become a fashion in the new Mecca of sailing. The America's Cup teams have been working for several months now to make their AC72 take off and in the racing world, they extended the foiling revolution initiated among others by Hydroptere, a pioneer in this sector.

This winter, Hydroptere gained two additional supports. The French investment company Capital Fund Management and the editor of driving assistance solutions Coyote System joined as official partners Lanson Champagne, the innovative companies CLIP Industrie and Atheos. "The budget of the record is almost complete. The project is still open to other partners who wish to join the adventure and get a historical record with us" told Alain Thébault.

Hydroptere is currently based in Alameda, east of San Francisco Bay. Thanks to Warren Fitzgerald and Jeff Mearing, the trimaran was lifted ashore by crane on Monday 15th April. She will receive a complete check-up before being launched in early May and then brought to Los Angeles where she will be positioned in standby for the record.

The Transpacific record

From the end of May, the period of stand-by will start. To fly over the swell from Los Angeles to Honolulu, the composition of the crew will be exceptional: Alain Thébault, designer and skipper ofHydroptere, Jean Le Cam, Yves Parlier and Jacques Vincent, his faithful fellows who hold together some of the best records of ocean racing. "Jean and Yves participated in the first flights ofHydroptere in the 90s. We made the first trials together and experienced unforgettable moments" said Alain Thébault, moved. "Jacques Vincent joined me in 2005 and we crossed the 50 knot speed barrier together. He is an impressive helmsman," said the skipper. The route between San Francisco and Los Angeles will be the opportunity to test the technical finetuning of the boat. The crew will then organize training sessions off Los Angeles until the best weather window to take off. "In June the position of the Pacific anticyclone is ideal because it provides the most direct route to Hawaii. The thermal wind is active in this season and we will quickly leave the California coast. Then we will surf the long Pacific swell downwind and we will probably have to make a gibe close the Hawaiian Islands "said Yves Parlier.

Pure speed and offshore records

After introducing the objectives of the Transpacific record, Alain Thébault talked about the future challenges of the team. Program: alternating between offshore records and pure speed. After the Pacific, Alain Thébault wants to focus on the absolute sailing speed record, a grail he had already won in 2009. The engineers of the team are now working on the design of a two-seater prototype whose objective will be to cross the average sailing speed barrier of 80 knots. "Thanks to the performance of Paul Larsen on Vestas SailRocket, sailing has entered the equivalent of supersonic era. The physical barrier of 50/55 knots has exploded. There is no more brake. Now we have to focus on an average speed of 80 knots with potential peaks at 100 knots, "said Alain Thébault. Anders Bringdal, the multi-titled Swedish windsurfer and long-time friend, will form the duet with Alain Thébault to pilot this new craft.

After this new incursion into the high speed, a return offshore is expected with Hydroptere 2, a trimaran, which will be a synthesis of the performance of Hydroptere first generation and of the best conventional maxi-multihulls. The objective is to cross the Atlantic in three days and cross the barrier of thousand nautical miles in 24 hours. "We have considerable experience in the field of foils and high speed. With these three challenges, we have an ambitious program in the short, medium and long term. Technology, human adventure and pioneering spirit will always be the core of the project", said Alain Thébault.

In French:

Mercredi 17 avril dans les ateliers parisiens de l’architecte Jean Nouvel, Alain Thébault et ses co-équipiers Jean Le Cam et Yves Parlier ont annoncé la poursuite du programme océanique de l’Hydroptère. Dans quelques semaines, ils tenteront de battre le record de la Transpacifique entre Los Angeles et Honolulu. En présence de leurs partenaires Lanson, Capital Fund Management, Clip Industrie, Atheos et Coyote, les trois marins ont expliqué la stratégie de course du « bateau qui vole », rappelé son héritage technologique et évoqué les prochains défis de l’écurie.

Assis côte à côte par hasard sur un vol Air France, Alain Thébault et Jean Nouvel se sont trouvés des affinités. L'un entre la mer et le ciel, l'autre sur la terre mais un point commun important : persistance et imagination dans la création de nouveaux concepts. C’est dans la grande salle des ateliers Jean Nouvel Design qu’Alain Thébault et ses co-équipiers ont annoncé leur départ imminent pour la Californie.

Il y a un an, l'Hydroptère se préparait en Méditerranée avant de rejoindre la Californie et tenter de battre le record de la Transpacifique. Arrivé à Los Angeles trop tard pour bénéficier de la fenêtre météo favorable des mois de juin et juillet, l’Hydroptère avait mis le cap sur San Francisco afin de poursuivre ses entraînements et saluer ses confrères de l’America's Cup. Le trimaran français fut le premier voilier à voler dans la baie à plus de 45 nœuds de vitesse. Faire voler des bateaux, c'est devenu une mode dans la nouvelle Mecque de la voile. Les écuries de l’America’s Cup travaillent depuis maintenant plusieurs mois pour faire décoller leurs AC72 et prolonger ainsi sur les circuits racing la révolution du foiling initiée entre autre par l’Hydroptère, l’un des pionniers dans le domaine.

Cet hiver, l’Hydroptère a décroché deux soutiens complémentaires. Le fonds d’investissement français Capital Fund Management et l’éditeur de solutions d’aide à la conduite Coyote System rejoignent au titre de partenaires officiels les champagnes Lanson, les PME innovantes CLIP Industrie et Atheos.

« Le budget du record est presque bouclé. Le projet est encore ouvert à d’autres partenaires qui souhaiteraient se joindre à l’aventure et décrocher à nos côtés ce premier record historique » a confié Alain Thébault.

l'Hydroptère est actuellement basé à Alameda, à l’est de la baie de San Francisco. Confié aux bons soins de Warren Fitzgerald et Jeff Mearing, le trimaran a été gruté à terre lundi 15 avril. Il va recevoir un check-up complet avant d’être remis à l’eau début mai puis convoyé vers Los Angeles où il se positionnera en stand-by météo pour le record.

Le record de la Transpacifique

A partir de la fin du mois de mai, la période de stand-by débutera. Pour survoler la houle de Los Angeles à Honolulu, l'équipage sera constitué d'un plateau exceptionnel : Alain Thébault, concepteur et skipper de l'Hydroptère, Jean Le Cam, Yves Parlier et Jacques Vincent, ses fidèles camarades qui cumulent à eux trois parmi les plus beaux palmarès de la course océanique. « Jean et Yves ont participé aux premiers vols de l’Hydroptère dans les années 90. On a essuyé les plâtres ensemble et vécu des moments inoubliables » s’est ému Alain Thébault. « Jacques Vincent m’a rejoint en 2005 et nous avons escaladé la barrière des 50 nœuds ensemble, son touché de barre est impressionnant » a ajouté le skipper. Le convoyage entre San Francisco et Los Angeles permettra de tester la mise au point technique du bateau. L’équipage s’entraînera ensuite au large de Los Angeles en attendant la meilleure fenêtre météo pour décoller. « Au mois de juin la position de l’anticyclone du Pacifique est idéale car il offre la route la plus directe vers Hawaii. Le vent thermique est bien actif à cette saison et nous permettra de quitter rapidement les côtes californiennes. Ensuite nous surferons la longue houle du Pacifique au portant, avec quelques empannages à prévoir à l’approche de l’archipel d’Hawaii » a précisé Yves Parlier.

Vitesse pure et records au large

Après avoir présenté les objectifs du record de la Transpacifique, Alain Thébault a évoqué les défis futurs de l’écurie. Au programme : une alternance entre records hauturiers et vitesse pure.
Après le Pacifique, Alain Thébault souhaite se consacrer au record absolu de vitesse à la voile, un graal qu'il avait déjà décroché en 2009. Les ingénieurs du team travaillent à la conception d’un prototype biplace dont l’objectif sera de franchir la barre des 80 nœuds de vitesse moyenne à la voile. « Grâce à la performance de Paul Larsen et son Vestas Sailrocket, la voile est entrée dans l’équivalent du supersonique. La frontière physique des 50/55 nœuds a volé en éclats. Il n'y a plus de frein. Maintenant ce sont les 80 nœuds de moyenne qu’il faut viser, avec probablement des pointes à 100 nœuds » a expliqué Alain Thébault. Anders Bringdal, le windsurfer suédois multi-titré et ami de longue date, formera le duo avec Alain Thébault pour piloter ce nouvel engin.

Après cette nouvelle incursion dans la haute vitesse, un retour au large est prévu avec l’Hydroptère 2, un trimaran qui fera la synthèse des performances de l’Hydroptère première génération et de celles des meilleurs maxi-multicoques classiques. L'objectif sera de franchir l’Atlantique en trois jours et de dépasser la barre des mille milles nautiques avalés en 24 heures. « Nous avons acquis une expérience considérable dans le domaine des foils à haute vitesse. Avec ces trois défis, nous avons de quoi alimenter un programme ambitieux à court, moyen et long terme. La technologie, l'aventure humaine et l'esprit pionnier seront comme toujours au centre du dispositif" a souligné Alain Thébault.