Banque Populaire crew presented with Jules Verne Trophy
Following Banque Populaire's successful attempt on the Jules Verne Trophy, the record for sailing non-stop around the world, so Loick Peyron and his crew were presented with the exceptional Trophy at a ceremony held last night at the Musée National de la Marine in Paris.
The 140ft long Banque Populaire trimaran recrossed the Ushant-Lizard start/finish line on the evening of 6 January to set a new time for the 29,000 mile non-stop lap of just 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds. Averaging 26.51 knots for the entire trip, they took 2 days 18 hours 1 minute and 59 seconds off the time set by Franck Cammas and the crew of Groupama 3 in 2010.
As is traditional the 14 strong Banque Populaire crew of Loick Peyron, Thierry Chabagny, Florent Chastel, Thierry Duprey du Vorsent, Kevin Escoffier, Emmanuel Le Borgne, Frédéric Le Peutrec, Jean-Baptiste Le Vaillant, Ronan Lucas, Pierre-Yves Moreau, Yvan Ravussin, Xavier Revil, Brian Thompson, Juan Vila and shore-based router Marcel van Triest were presented with the trophy by the Drector of the Musée National de la Marine, Admiral Burn. Also in attendance were Florence Arthaud, a founding member of Jules Verne Trophy in attendance and Loick's elder brother Bruno, a three time holder of the record and the first person to set the record.
With Franck Cammas fighting for the lead of leg five of the Volvo Ocean Race so the Groupama team was represented by Jacques Caraës although Cammas sent a message for his successors, that was read out during the ceremony.
The Jules Verne Trophy itself, held by the French Ministry of Culture is permanently on exhibition at the National Maritime Museum. This exception work by American artist Thomas Shannon comprises a sleek metal hull, that floats on a magnetic field and is retained from shooting off its plinth by a cable effectively anchoring the hull. All dimensions of this trophy are symbolic - in proportion, the midship size of the hull corresponds to the diameter of the earth; the radius of each end is proportional to that of the moon.
Skipper Loick Peyron, commented: "What I remember is not only 45 days at sea but a story that, for Banque Populaire, is long standing, for 23 years, and is not finished. These are 45 days of confirmation of the talent of the whole team and not just the sailing. We know that in the wake there are people who have gone before us and there will certainly be many more after."
François Pérol, Fhief Executive of BPCE added: "The awarding of the Jules Verne Trophy for Banque Populaire Group (BPCE), is the reward for 23 years of commitment to sailing and ocean racing. It is a victory of a dynamic and modern banking brand, whose values keeps performance and entrepreneurship alive, every day, in part, in its employees."
Brian Thompson, the only British crew member on board Banque Populaire was the first to be part of a Jules Verne Trophy winning crew for 18 years. He commented: "It was a fantastic evening at the Musee de la Marine (the French equivalent of our National Maritime Museum in Greenwich). The building overlooks the Eiffel Tower and it is full of the history of varied maritime adventures - a very appropriate place to celebrate our record-breaking voyage. There was a great crowd to see the ceremony, and it was a very special moment to be reunited with the crew after 3 months, and then to be given the trophy, and to place it in position levitating atop its magnetic base. Its the most spectacular and beautiful trophy I have ever seen."