Jean le Cam to compete in Barcelona World Race
Veteran French offshore racer Jean le Cam returns to the high seas at the end of this year as skipper of an Open 60 to be sponsored by President, part of the Lactalis Group. Le Cam is a veteran of a Whitbread Round the World race with Eric Tabarly on Pen Duick VI and two Vendee Globes, but lost his boat VM Materiaux off Cape Horn in the last solo lap of the planet and was rescued by Vincent Riou. Le Cam will be competing in the Barcelona World Race with Spaniard Bruno Garcia aboard the former Ecover 3 of Mike Golding.
“We rented Mike Golding's boat and delivered it last week from Southampton to Port-la-Forêt, where at the moment we're testing the keel, the mast and the hull, before leaving on our qualifer - probably a return ticket to the Azores,” says le Cam.
Le Cam and Garcia must cover 2,800 miles doublehanded in order to qualifier for the Barcelona World Race.
“When we return, we will take the boat ashore sometime at the beginning of November, to give her her new paintjob and fit the new sails we have ordered from North. We will have approximately two months to prepare before the start.”
Next week Le Cam will go to Saint-Malo prior to the start of the Route du Rhum to greet his fellow skippers of which some will be among his future adversaries in the Barcelona World Race, like Kito de Pavant, Michel Desjoyeaux and Jean-Pierre Dick.
Le Cam states his objective is to be on the podium of the Barcelona World Race. "After we'll see,” he says. "The race is very interesting because it is in the IMOCA class and is on the same course as Vendée Globe. In addition there is great competition - the Spanish armada but also the new VPLP-Verdier designs - Foncia, Virbac-Paprec 3, etc…”
Less known to the general public, is co-skipper Bruno Garcia who has most recently sailed on the IMOCA 60 Estrella Damm, but who also sailed in the Figaro class, when he has the opportunity taking time off work as a cardiologist in Barcelona hospital.
“I have known him since the Figaro, when we races against one another. He is very qualified and I get along very well with him,” says le Cam.
Bruno Garcia says: “I raced a Transat AG2R which Jean won. I also sailed three Solitaire du Figaros and of these three, Jean won two... so I have a rather clear idea of who is “Mister” Le Cam! For me, to sail around the world in race has always been a dream… but with Jean Le Cam! That exceeds all that I could have imagined!”
As to the former Ecover 3, Garcia says: “I only have Estrella Damm as a reference, but the boat seems to me to be very competitive. If not, the gauge will be Jean's expression. However, during the delivery he smiled very much. So I think all is well!”
In just over 75 years, the Lactalis Groupe has managed to position itself as one of the key players in the agro-food sector. With 40,000 employees around the world, brands such as President, Galbani, Societe, have become familiar across the globe.
Yearly sales reach some 10 billion Euros. From that figure, the company's growth in Spain will allow them to surpass 10 billion Euros annually by joining the sales of their global brands with other Spanish brands such as FLor de Esgueva, El Ventero, Gran Capitan cheeses, and Puleva, Lactel and Chufi milk and beverages.
Andor Serra, Director General of the FNOB: “It's great news that a sponsor such as Président is getting onboard the Barcelona World Race with Le Cam and García, who've demonstrated that they get on well and will form a powerful team”.