Possibly the coolest trophy in existence, the Jules Verne Trophy comprises a metal hull that is tethered at one end and floats in the air held up by magnetism

Possibly the coolest trophy in existence, the Jules Verne Trophy comprises a metal hull that is tethered at one end and floats in the air held up by magnetism

Orange II awarded

The incredible Trophy Jules Verne is presented to Bruno Peyron and his crew for third time

Tuesday December 6th 2005, Author: Benedicte Etienne, Location: France
During a ceremony that took place last night at the Musée de la Marine in Paris, Bruno Peyron and the crew of the giant catamaran Orange II were awarded the Jules Verne Trophy, celebrating their incredible voyage around the world last March when they established a new record time of 50 days, 16 hours, 20 minutes and 4 seconds for sailing non-stop around the planet. For Peyron, skipper of Orange II and previously the first man to sail around the world in less than 80 days, this was the third time he had received this award.

Looking beyond the human endeavour, the figures are extraordinary: in just 12 years, Bruno Peyron has his initial record by 29 days. In 1993, on board Commodore Explorer, he was the first to take up the challenge for the Jules Verne Trophy (to be the first boat around the world in less than 80 days), just managing to achieve this feat. In 2005, on board a vessel bearly imaginable a decade ago, Peyron and his crew took another giant step forward, achieving the first voyage under sail around the world in well under two months!

"This progress is in fact quite logical", says Peyron. "In 1993 we were setting off into the unknown and things worked out well. Then we launched The Race and a new generation of giant multihulls was born. In 2002, on board one of the three catamarans designed for this event, we cut the record to 64 days. Orange II is the latest in this line of boats, and the evolution is quite understandable." Logical and understandable it may have been, but improving on the circumnavigation time by 14 days in just three years is an incredible leap forward in terms of performance, and a giant step in terms of design and technology. Nevertheless, the true magic of the Jules Verne Trophy is that this in no way takes anything away from the extraordinary human endeavour of such an achievement.

Looking back....

Jules Verne Trophy: the birth of a crazy challenge
Back in 1984, in La Trinité sur mer in Brittany, yachtsman Yves Le Cornec spoke for the first time of the Jules Verne challenge for sailing around the world non-stop in less than 80 days. Even then he felt it was achievable based on the average speed he had just achieved in the Quebec-St Malo race on board William Saurin Eugène Riguidel’s maxi-trimaran: at an average speed of 13 knots circumnavigating the globe would only take 80 days. Unfortunately no sponsors seemed interested in what seemed an unreasonable challenge, even if it was based on the catchy myth of Phileas Fogg. It was only in 1990 that a small group of pioneers got together to lit the torch again. This came about in Paris, aboard Yvon Fauconnier’s barge, where for the event Vendee Globe winner Titouan Lamazou, Route du Rhum winner Florence Arthaud, Bruno and Loïck Peyron, Jean-Yves Terlain, Sir Peter Blake and Robin Knox-Johnston were present. The basic principles were rapidly drawn up and written down in what became known as the Jatte Agreement: sailing around the world via the three capes, with a free choice of starting line and total freedom concerning the boat…

1993: the adventure begins
Peyron and his crew had little time to prepare on board the former Jet Services V, which had been modified and strengthened for the occasion and crossed the start line on 31 January. Olivier de Kersauson and his crew had already been at sea for a week by this stage, while Peter Blake, Robin Knox-Johnson and their crew had set off just a few hours before Peyron - this first running of the Jules Verne was lining up to be quite a battle. Unfortunately, both of Commodore Explorer’s rivals were forced to retire from the race with damage and Peyron's catamaran continued to race alone, as she made her way out of the first storm entering the Deep South. Another major storm was to strick shortly before reaching Cape Horn during which winds reached more than 80 knots. It took them 48 hours to get through it. Then, having made their way back up the Atlantic passing through calms and colliding twice with cetaceans, Peyron and his men completed their round the world voyage in 79 days. History was in the making…

2002: Winning back the trophy
Five years previously the Trophy was won by Olivier de Kersauson, who had snatched it away from Sir Peter Blake's ENZA New Zealand who had won it in 1994. 71 days meant that it was certainly a difficult challenge, but measuring 33m LOA, the giant Orange, the sister-ship of the winner of The Race, Grant Dalton's Club Med, had impressive potential, the first of the new generation of 100+ft G Class maxi-multihulls to attempt the record. After starting on 14 February the team were forced to pull in less than an hour after the start when the top of her mast broke. Orange set sail again on 2 March 2002 in 40 knot winds under the mainsail and small breeze spinnaker. The tone was set, and Orange flew out the starting blocks eating up the miles.

On their 16th day at sea, the crew entered the Roaring 40s and a week later found themselves in 65 knot winds with the sails lowered. After an incredibly rough Indian Ocean crossing, the Pacific was to be kinder enabling them to go on the attack and cover more than 600 miles a day. There was however to be a shadow over the final stage of the race, as a crack appeared on the ball at the foot of the mast, forcing them to extend their journey in order to preserve the equipment. Despite this their time was phenomenonal as Orange reached Brest on 5 May after 64 days at sea, cutting the previous record by a week.

2005: Another world
Orange II had proved what she was capable of when she covered 706.2 miles in 24 hours during her attempt at the Atlantic record. The figures spoke for themselves, but they would still have to improve on the 63 days taken by Olivier de Kersauson's new maxi-trimaran Geronimo, and above all beat Cheyenne, which outside of the Jules Verne rules had set a new circumnavigation time of 58 days. The first stretch of their attempt was not the fastest (the Ushant-Equator leg record still belongs to Geronimo), but it was with peak speeds above 38 knots that the crew made their way deep into the Southern Ocean. The subsequent point to point records would then to fall in succession: 14 days to reach Good Hope, 21 days to reach Cape Leeuwin… And just 32 days of sailing between Ushant and Cape Horn, or an improvement of one week over Cheyenne’s time. The Atlantic was to prove a tougher battle, as they had to deal with collisions and calmer periods, reminding them of their first attempt in 1993. However, the final stretch of the race saw Orange fly over the finishing line in 30-knot winds and on 15 February the giant entered the history books. We can now sail around the world in 50 days,
averaging more than 22 knots!

The Jules Verne Trophy/ Records and attempts

1993 Commodore Explorer / Bruno Peyron 79 days and 6 hours 15'
1993 Charal / Olivier de Kersauson, retired, exploded float after collision
as they entered the Indian Ocean.
1993 Enza New-Zeland / Peter Blake, retired, cracked hull after collision
as they entered the Indian Ocean.
1994 Enza New-Zealand / Peter Blake 74 days and 22 hours 17'
1994 Lyonnaises des Eaux-Dumez / Olivier de Kersauson 77 days and 5 hours
1995 Sport Elec / Olivier de Kersauson, retired due to unfavourable weather
1996 Sport Elec / Olivier de Kersauson, retired due to unfavourable weather
1997 Sport Elec / Olivier de Kersauson 71 days and 14 hours 22'
1998 Tracy Edwards / Maiden, retired in the Pacific (ladies team)
2002 Geronimo / Olivier de Kersauson, retired due to vibrations coming from
the rudder
2002 Orange / Bruno Peyron 64 days and 8 hours (18.15 knots over 29,035
2003 Géronimo / Olivier de Kersauson, 68 days 10 hours 58'
2003 Ellen Mac Arthur / Kingfisher 2 retired as she lost her mast in the
2004 Géronimo / Olivier de Kersauson, 63 days 13 hours 59'
2005 Orange II / Bruno Peyron, 50 days, 16 hours, 20’

Outright round the world record / WSSRC
2005 Orange II / Bruno Peyron, 50 days, 16 hours, 20’

Latest Comments

Add a comment - Members log in


Latest news!

Back to top
    Back to top