Sam Davies to compete in the Vendee Globe 2012
British yachtswoman Sam Davies was at the Salon Nautique in Paris today, where she officially announced her intention to compete in the 2012/13 Vendée Globe. Her lead sponsor for the race will be Brittany-based firm Savéol, France's biggest tomato producer.
Following a fourth place finish in the 2008/09 Vendée Globe, Sam, now 37, was the heroine of that race and is the first woman to confirm her place on the starting line at Sables d’Olonne on 10 November 2012.
For her Breton lead sponsor, which grows and sells high quality fruit and vegetables, the partnership with Sam Davies is seen as a natural progression. Sam won over her audience at Savéol's general meeting in 2009, then sailed under the company's colours in the Transat AG2R transatlantic race, alongside her partner Romain Attanasio, an experienced Figaro sailor. Convinced by Sam's personality and plans, the firm, which is keen to internationalise its business, took the plunge and seized the opportunity to support an ambitious project and a yachtswoman who is admired by her peers and popular with the public.
Around Savéol, Sam's Vendée Globe plans have become a multi-partnership enterprise with a constellation of companies lining up to join her adventure. On her return from the 2008 Vendée, Sam and her project manager Xavier David set up their offshore racing team My Samantha Company, aimed at attracting dynamic businesses around a major sports sponsorship programme. To date, the team's sponsors include official partners Mât de Misaine (sportswear) and Ridorev (mobile homes); a partners club including pioneering companies with the Oséo Excellence label and SMEs from the Saint-Gilles Croix de Vie area – a strong base of support for Sam - and also technical partners whose expertise will be crucial for optimizing the boat, whose identity Sam finally revealed at Nautic.
Sam and her team have opted for the former Véolia as the boat of choice. It's the same 60 footer that Roland Jourdain sailed to victory in the 2006 Route du Rhum and in which he entered the 2008 Vendée Globe, eventually being forced to abandon his challenge when lying in second place. In the same monohull, Boris Herman and Ryan Breymaier took fifth in the 2010 Barcelona World Race. Reliable and fast, the boat has already competed with the Jourdain teams. Optimised for the 2012 Vendée Globe, she'll be ready to carry Sam to a podium finish!
Sam Davies : “I’m so happy… I have been waiting three years for this day ! I found a fantastic sponsor and also a whole family of co-sponsors to support my project. I can’t wait to get back out on the water and share this adventure with everyone. I’ll do everything I can to make my sponsors proud of me.”
Philippe Daré, Président de Savéol : "Savéol and Sam have a lot in common : dynamism and a strong taste for the adventure. Sam is the best ambassador to carry Savéol’s colours, values and variety of products."