Lalou Roucayrol and Alex Pella,
winners of the Transat Jacques Vabre in the Multi50 class !
Thursday 16 novembre 2017
On 16 November at 8.49 am (French time), Lalou Roucayrol and Alex Pella crossed the finish line of the Transat Jacques Vabre in Salvador de Bahia (Brazil) as winners in the Multi50 category. After sailing from Le Havre on 5 November, the Arkema pair covered the course’s 4,350 theoretical miles in 10 days 19 hours 14 minutes and 19 seconds, averaging a speed of 16.81 knots. An outstanding performance for these skippers who managed to overcome both technical and physical hurdles to ultimately claim victory. Lalou and Alex also relied on the invaluable support of Karine Fauconnier who was in charge of routing from land.
Lalou Roucayrol and Alex Pella were well placed from the very start and always in the top two spots among the fleet of the six Multi50 boats in competition. On the strength of their respective experience coupled with an excellent partnership on board, the two skippers succeeded in pushing their machine in the steady wind conditions that it excels in. Throughout the race down the Atlantic towards Salvador de Bahia, the Franco-Spanish pair were engaged in a great duel with FenêtreA-Mix Buffet skippered by the formidable Erwan Le Roux and Vincent Riou. Although they had trained together late in the day, the pair at the helm of Arkema have achieved a superb victory, the first for Lalou in his ninth Transat Jacques Vabre race.
A performance that is all the more remarkable given that Lalou Roucayrol and Alex Pella have overcome a number of hurdles, to begin with electronic failures that were highly punishing, in particular for receiving weather data. In the fifth night of the race, the Spanish skipper sustained an injury when carrying out a manoeuver, brutally trapped between the boom and the winch grinder, which left him with two broken ribs. Despite these problems, the pair refused to give up, and have now claimed this splendid victory!
As the team’s weather strategist, Karine Fauconnier fulfilled a key role by enabling the Multi50 flying the Arkema colors to follow the best routes, indeed the routes that have taken the team to top place on the podium.
Lalou Roucayrol and Alex Pella dropped several records * during this victorious crossing.
– Record of the distance covered over 24 hours in Multi50: 568 miles / 24 hours
The previous record, 524 miles, was held since July 16, 2016 by Ciela Village (Thierry Bouchard) on the occasion of Quebec / Saint-Malo.
– Multi50 Record of the Transat Jacques Vabre on the course Le Havre / Salvador de Bahia: 10 days, 19 hours, 14 minutes and 19 seconds
The previous reference time was held by Crepes Whaou! in 2005 with Franck-Yves and Kevin Escoffier: 12 days, 06 hours, 13 minutes.
– Average speed record on the Transat Jacques Vabre in Multi50:
16.81 knots on the great circle (direct route).
They improve the performance of FenêtréA-Cardinal (Erwan Le Roux / Yann Eliès) who raced at an average speed of 15.3 knots in 2013 (on a longer course between Le Havre and Itajaí).
* Subject to WSSRC validation