Normandy Channel Race

Normandy Channel Race

Sunday April 14 2013 Author: Miranda Merron Location: France

Campagne de France: Normandy channel race 2013

Good afternoon from a hugely overcast Caen. With all 20 boats now safely within the Bassin St Pierre it is easy to see why people are excited about this years Normandy Channel Race. According to both Halvard and Miranda over halve the fleet has a good chance of taking line honors. After last years disappointment of loosing 1st place by only 11 minuets, the Campagne de France team are out to win the 1000 mile blast around the English Channel, but know they are certainly up against it!

Yesterday brought with it the completion of many pre race jobs - E.g. cleaning and checking the mast, making sure diesel levels are correct and giving the hull a good clean allowing the boat to be as smooth and fast through the water as possible. This however meant a trip up the rig for Miranda and an afternoon swimming in the Bassin St Pierre for Halvard!

Last night also allowed the crews to let there hair down at the skippers dinner, a brilliant event with good food, great wine and better company. For the team it was the perfect opportunity to catch up with each other and catch up with different crews after blasting around the world for the last year!page1image12424 page1image12584

The Skippers briefing took place this morning with every detail gone over several times. The French Navy talked about rescue operations, Meteo France talked weather and the race organisation talked schedules. Two hours later the teams were allowed back to their boats and cracked on provisioning themselves for the next 6 days at sea before they were again summoned for the Skippers presentation. With nearly 100 children and nearly as many adults looking for Autographs us British sailors have to admire the way the French have made the sport their own.

However todays highlight had to be, hosting the Stade Malherbe Caen football team. Some might remember the same event happening during the last edition of the race. It was once again a great success and brilliant to continue developing the relationship between the two teams.

Tonight the team have been invited to dinner with Campagne de France to celebrate the continuation of their sponsorship. Whilst giving Miranda and Halvard some good food before they revert to freeze dried and the snacks they are taking with them.

Tomorrows plan is to leave the dock at around 11:30am Local time and slowly parade behind ‘Vulcain’ (French naval vessel acting as the committee boat) to Ouistreham lock. After this the fleet will continue to the start line and await the warning signal at 4:52pm Local for a 5pm Start.

The course is:
- Saint Marcouf Islands to Starboard
- Saint Marcouf west Bouy to Starboard - Isle of Wight to Port
- Tusker rock to Port
- Fastnet rock to Port
- Guernsey Island to Port.

For those based on the Isle of Wight, Monday morning could prove a good time to be looking out as the fleet of 20 are expected to pass at around 8am British time as they make their way through the solent. Lets hope it Campagne de Frances colours in first!

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As normal there are several ways to follow the race. Facebook will be updated on a regular basis and can be found by following this link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Halvard-Mabire-and-Miranda-Merron-Sailing-team/ 126461740755474?fref=ts

I am also trying to figure out twitter, we can be found at:

https://twitter.com/Mabire_Merron

Online at:
www.mirandamerron.com (English site) and www.Mabiremerron.com (for the french speaking)

The race tracker will be available from:

http://www.normandy-race.com/index/carto

Enjoy the race,
Sam 

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