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Route du Rhum - La Banque Postale

Franck Cammas first to arrive in Guadeloupe

9 days 3 hours 14 mins 47 seconds to succeed to Lemonchois

mardi 9 novembre 2010Information Route du Rhum

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When he brought the giant 31m trimaran Groupama 3 across the finish line off Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadeloupe today (Tuesday)under perfect sunshine and light breezes Franck Cammas (FRA) won the 9th edition of the Route du Rhum Route du Rhum #RouteDuRhum - La Banque Postale, the 3542 miles transatlantic race from Saint Malo for solo skippers which takes place every four years.

Cammas crossed the finish line at 16h 16min 47. Secs (CET paris : 15h 16 mins 47 secs GMT, 11 hrs 16 mins 47 seconds local time)

The elapsed time for the course, after starting Saint Malo at 1302hr (CET/paris) Is. 9 days 3 hours 14 mins 47 seconds

He average speed over the course on the water was 20, 39 knots for the actual course sailed of 4471 miles. .

The course record Record #sailingrecord of 7 days17 hrs 19 mins 6 seconds was set in 2006

Cammas adds his name to the legend of the ’Rhum’ as successor to Mike Birch, Marc Pajot, Philippe Poupon, Florence Arthaud, Laurent Bourgnon, Michel Desjoyeaux and Lionel Lemonchois.

Quotes :

On ranking this win among others :

“All victories are good but I’ve never experienced a finish like this, either the weather on the water or the welcome here.” “This victory is was not really expected, we prepared very well but I did not really know how it would unfold on the boat, so it is hard to know how to rank it in the list. But certainly I am very proud to be able to add my name to those who have won it before me.”

On the southern routing :

“After the first 24 hours I had settled in and felt like I knew the boat, so I knew it was not that difficult to sail the boat and be in front so it was let’s go for it.”

What it will mean to him ?

“ I think I was a pretty good sailor before the start in Saint Malo and so I am not sure that this win will change anything. There were many other good sailors at sea and I was very happy to be out there competing with Francis and Thomas. It goes without saying that I was happy to be in front of them.”

A step into the unknown ?

“I left without any pressure, but like for the others it was into the unknown with the boat. It really depended on having the good weather for the boat, we picked a route which was best for the boat. We were far from the potential that we develop with the crew. In some ways that was a bit frustrating at times, but that is single-handing.”

On the route and sailing the boat, and working with Jean Luc Nélias and Charles Caudrelier ?

“ After Fréhel we took different routes. Generally I feel very good with the boat in shifty conditions. The first morning I had a very good position. That first night I had to manoeuvre a lot, but then the weather opportunity we had chosen closed behind me.”

“ We worked with the routers to sail to the optimum potential of the boat, and I was sometimes sailing with the boat at 98% of its potential in this configuration (shorter rig, etc) The course to the south was good if I was going fast. Francis and Gitana did not really make it. After that we really had to see if the ones in the north would come back. Thomas did a good job, but I think his course was a more technical course than mine and I suppose Gitana suffered a bit dealing with the front.”

On having the giants in the Rhum :

“ I was thinking that it was a very good boat for double handed sailing. I had a conversation with Jean (Maurel race director) about single handed sailing the boat and that it could be dangerous in the squalls, but I was more confident with the boat in them than with the 60 footer.”

The first Provencal to win the Rhum, you’ll need to ask the Bretons what they think. But I have been adopted !

There is always pleasure and satisfaction when you sail. There are conditions you feel at one with the boat. Above all when you sail a boat like Gitana 3, you have to have high expectations to be able to reach them.

What he did like most ?

“I did not like the waiting in Saint Malo and I did not like the last hours of the race, those miles were unfolding very slowly. The conditions were just not very nice and you went to get off and enjoy it and celebrate.”

On the present and future, heading into the Volvo Ocean Race

“ I thank Groupama for the opportunity to do this and move on to the Volvo. We have a really good team. We have the design and the sailing background and knowledge to show the anglo-saxons that we can make it. The English have interesting know-how.”

On the start and the first few hours ?

“Eighty four boats on the start line was quite impressive, it was an emotional but nice stat. The first real moon I saw was last night. The nights were pitch black and the winds more often than not shifty, I was nervous when it was squally. But I had confidence in the boat, and much of that was developed and instilled sailing with the crew, so I had confidence in the platform for sure. In a 45 knots squall you grab the helm and wait for it to pass. But it could become unmanageable. So you just grab the helm and pray…..but its better than the 60 footers.”

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