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The editor's focus

In the Polynesian way...


In the Polynesian way...

123 km on the open sea on a Polynesian pirogue – tempted? This was the slightly crazy challenge attempted by the participants in the Vendée Va'a, at the beginning of May...

The idea is simple – use the famous Polynesian pirogue to complete a real marathon, in three days. The Va'a is equipped with an outrigger to keep it stable, which therefore makes it a kind of proa... This outrigger is always situated on the left, and is fixed in a flexible manner. A Va'a can be crewed by one, three or, as in the Vendée Va'a, six paddlers. In this case, the pirogue is called a va’aono, and is around 13 metres long.
The race itself is over three legs – 49.5km the first day, then 26.7km, and finally 46.5km on the last day. The paddlers are real athletes, capable of keeping up staggering average speeds, even on the open sea. The proof: in one of the most mythical events, the Hawaiki Nui Va'a, which links the islands of Huahine, Raiatea, Tahaa and Bora-Bora in three legs and 124.5km, the best crews took less than 9h30 to cover the course, an average speed of over 8 knots...

The results:
For more information about the Va'a:

Further reading

Pirogues in Tahiti

There is nothing better than a pirogue for sailing in the lagoon: this is what Julien ...

Tahiti Pearl Regatta

What could be better than going to race in Tahiti... This year, the Tahiti Pearl ...

Tahiti Douche: the last of the big proas ...

A little more than two years ago now, we dedicated an article to this mythical proa, ...
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