Banque Populaire extends its sponsorship until 2016

French bank acquires the Route du Rhum winning maxi-tri for their IMOCA 60 skipper

Thursday January 17th 2013, Author: James Boyd, Location: none selected

Banque Populaire, has been backing racing yachts since 1989 and has been a partner of the French Sailing Federation, the FFV, since 2000. The French bank has reaffirmed its commitment to sailing until 2016.

2012 was a busy year for Banque Populaire's sailing program including a successful Jules Verne Trophy campaign, their maxi-trimaran establishing a new record in the hands of Loick Peyron and his crew. They backed the French Olympic Sailing team at London 2012, plus the Mediterranean tour of the Pen Duick fleet and currently Armel le Cleac'h's participation in the Vendée Globe.

Today Banque Populaire has confirmed that it has acquired the maxi-trimaran Groupama 3, with the aim of entering the 105ft trimaran in the 2014 Route du Rhum with Armel le Cleac'h at the helm. In the hands of Franck Cammas the boat won the last Route du Rhum, and this will mark the return of le Cleac'h to multihull racing after he resigned from it following a capsize of the Foncia ORMA 60 trimaran during one Transat Jacques Vabre.

Both boats will be prepared at the Team Banque Populaire base within the submarine silos in Lorient, a few steps from the Cité de la Voile Eric Tabarly, led as ever by Ronan Lucas.

Armel le Cleac'h will also be supported by the bank in the Figaro class when he returns to it for the next Solitaire du Figaro starting on 2 June in Bordeaux. With two Solitaire du Figaro wins under his belt, le Cleac'h will be hoping to add a third, making him part of the exclusive club of three time winners comprising Philippe Poupon, Jean le Cam and Michel Desjoyeaux.

Banque Populaire is continuing its support of the FFV via its 1,076 clubs, including 433 sailing schools and 261 sports schools until 2016 and will continue to develop its relationships with regional sailing. This has involved the co-financing of equipment for clubs and sailing schools and allows them to develop their activities. The partnership has helped finance the acquisition of more than 30,000 life jackets, and 1,000 boats, 7000 sails and 100,000 official uniforms.

It will also continue to support the French Olympic sailing team en route to Rio 2016.

Chantal Petrachi, Communications Director of Banque Populaire said: "We are particularly proud to reaffirm our commitment to sailing. It is proof of our fidelity in this perennial sport that shares our values ​​and to the talented men and women who carry out their projects with passion and determination."

Armel Le Cléac'h added: "I am very pleased to continue this great collaboration with the Team Banque Populaire. These new and exciting challenges will allow me to take in two big races - the Solitaire du Figaro and the Route du Rhum. Currently at sea on the Vendée Globe, I know that the technical team is already preparing the rest of our program. I thank Banque Populaire for their renewed confidence in me over these two seasons to come."

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