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The editor's focus

François Gabart takes victory in The Transat bakerly


François Gabart takes victory in The Transat bakerly

In the collective memory, it’s not that long ago that there was only one Transat: the one the French call the English Transat, formerly known as the OSTAR, between England and the USA by the north Atlantic. A difficult, tough race, worthy of only the best sailors.

The last time the race was run was in 2008. Multihulls had not been invited for this race, despite them having created legends over this course. But when the organizers announced that the race would rise from the ashes again in 2016, the racing world mobilized to ensure the bar was set high for this legendary race. Finally, even though there were only 24 sailors on the startline (a long way from the record of 1976, with 125 entrants), the three Ultime trimarans and the Multi 50s have put on a memorable show.

Thomas Coville (Sodebo) and François Gabart (Macif) have been neck and neck for most of the race, which this time has had an air of the Route du Rhum about it, with competitors taking a very southerly course. On paper, Macif is faster downwind, leading Thomas Coville to take a gamble with the weather. Unfortunately for the skipper of Sodebo, this wasn’t going to be enough.

In the end, Macif took 8 days, 8 hours, 54 minutes and 39 seconds to cover the theoretical 3,050 nautical miles of the great circle route between Plymouth and New York at an average speed of 15.18 knots. But in reality, François Gabart’s southerly route saw him cover 4,643 miles through the water at a mind-blowing 23.11 knots!

A word from the winner:
“I reckon this is one of the hardest things I’ve ever undertaken. It has been hyper-demanding. Right to the end it has been incredibly physical. I feel burnt out.
I’m a bit reluctant to go to sleep. I’m going to take a few naps… I don’t know how long it’ll take me to get back to normal, but it’ll take a bit of time. There’s no way I could do two races like that in one year.”

For the full results:

Further reading

The Transat bakerly 2016 sets sail

The 25 boats in The Transat bakerly 2016 fleet set sail on one of the great races in ...

The Transat 2016

If there is one transatlantic race which is historic and iconic, it is of course the ...

Loick Peyron (Maxi Solo Banque Populaire ...

Thirty two years after the first of his seven attempts, French ocean racing star ...
© Aloha Editions 2016 : All rights reserved
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