New pairing for Concise Class 40

Ned Collier-Wakefield and Sam Goodchild to compete in Transat Jacques Vabre

Tuesday September 20th 2011, Author: James Boyd, Location: United Kingdom

British sailors Ned Collier-Wakefield and Sam Goodchild have teamed up to race in the 2011 Transat Jaques Vabre from Le Havre to Costa Rica. They will be the youngest crew leaving France at the end of October, sailing Concise 2, a second generation Marc Lombard designed Akilaria Class 40.

Collier-Wakefield, 23, has already skippered Team Concise to a number of fully-crewed victories over the past four years. These include the 2009 Class 40 World Championships, 2010 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland, 2009 & 2011 RORC Caribbean 600 and the 2011 Transatlantic Race.

Meanwhile, Goodchild, 21, winner of the 2011 Artemis Offshore Academy scholarship, spent the winter training at CEM, one of France’s leading offshore sailing academies and then competed in this year’s Solitaire du Figaro. Previously, he has sailed on a number of Class 40s, racking up 12,000 miles including three Atlantic crossings. Goodchild is no stranger to the team having delivered the original Concise back to the UK in 2009.

Team Concise was established by Tony Lawson to help young British sailors get into offshore racing. The focus was originally on crewed races while the team gained experience. Now, as planned the emphasis has turned to the short-handed, ocean racing 'classics' such as the Transat Jacques Vabre.

Speaking from the team’s Haslemere headquarters Tony Lawson commented that “ultimately, some of the boys are set on the Vendee Globe. We have made progress, but we haven’t any illusions as to the hurdles involved, not least the cost. Meanwhile, we are pressing on with our Class 40 campaign, but constantly reviewing our options."

The doublehanded Transat Jaques Vabre is an event that both Sam and Ned have always had on their cards. The 4500 mile race starts from
Le Havre and finishes off Puerto Limon, Costa Rica. The course provides a series of challenges for the crews, the first being the Bay of Biscay in November. The teams are faced with tough tactical decisions later in the race, particularly whether they go north or south of the Azores High to reach the Caribbean - all of which will ultimately determine the final approach to the Costa Rica finish line.

Having just completed the Qualifier, Concise 2 will now have a refit in Cowes before some intense training and the start on 30 October off Le Havre.

Sam Goodchild can’t wait for the start: “The Transat Jacques Vabre has all of challenges a racer could ask for. It’s a test of sailing, navigation, tactics and stamina with the chance of a late hurricane thrown in as well. We will be up against World-class crews with years more experience. Ned and I see this as our chance to measure ourselves against the best and we are up for it”.

Summing up Tony Lawson pointed out that “Ned has some serious miles under his belt on Concise 2. These 12 months will see him do two Tansatlantics, two RORC 600s and the Fastnet. He decided to do the latter just two up against a fully crewed fleet as practice for the TJV and finished just 17 minutes behind the winner. Meanwhile, Sam has had some of the best technical and single-handed training you
can get. They work together as a team, complimenting each other.

"This is no practise run! They have their eyes on the rostrum and are in it to win it!”

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